Page 1

The relationship of the translator to the writer is an erotic relationship always, and you learn something about the person that you’re working with in an almost plastic, physical way that you can almost never learn about your friends.

-Richard Howard

A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N

Aldus is: Editors: Nathaniel Edwards Emma Ramadan Staff: Tariq Adely Christopher Anderson Beatrix Chu Juan-Diego Mariategui Greg Nissan Eli Pitegoff Alison Silver Faculty Advisor:

Forrest Gander

This issue of Aldus was printed by Brown University Graphic Services. The front and back covers were designed by Tariq Adely. Graphic production was managed by Laura Leddy. Aldus was made possible with generous support from the Office of International Affairs, the Cogut Center for the Humanities, the Campus Life Fund, as well as the Departments of Comparative Literature, French Studies, Hispanic Studies, and Portuguese and Brazilian Studies. Please direct all submissions, inquires or comments to

Visit our website at Vistit our blog at


a journal of translation

Issue 3, Winter 2012/13

A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N A note on translation from Richard Howard


Letter from the Editors


Combined Translations of Catullus 5 & 7 Translated by Evan Thomas


A Sentimental Conversation Translated by Lucy Lee


Pagan Proses from Amastris Translated by Tariq Adely


Selections from Ulrike Almut Sandig & Lutz Seiler


Selections from Desnos, Corbière, Tardieu, Prudhomme, & Vian


Three poems by Esther Ramón


From 가슴에 새긴 미화 (The Blossom Inscribed In My Heart)


Selections from Bye, Have a Good Time!


Selections from Dionysiaca



Translated by Bradley Schmidt

Translated by Christopher Anderson Translated by Forrest Gander

Translated by Eunice Kim

Translated by Mariela Giffor

Translated by Andrew Barrett

T A B L E O F C O N T E N T S I Am the Ghost Of A King Translated by Juan-Diego Mariategui


The Scream Translated by Andrea Wister


Morphine Translated by Cathy Nelson & Vanessa Martínez


After A Dream Translated by Alison Silver


Excerpts from Summer 80 Translated by Emma Ramadan


Extract of Die Verschleppung Translated by Adrian West


Bouvard et Pécuchet Translated by Marion Tricoire


The Sinking Hearts Society Translated by Pat Dubrava


A Mysterious Crime Translated by Timothy Nassau


The Translators The Authors

134 138


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N

What we have to say is this: translate. Enter the love affair. Find the intimate places of the text, convince it to reveal its secrets, all of them, deliberately. Once you’ve seduced each word into a whimper, the universal language, infiltrate the body of the text, know it inside and out, study every curve and quirk and blemish. Then drag it, tenderly, little by little, into your world, your larger body. Accept that what you are engaged in is not simply a reproductive endeavor – it is a rejuvenating one, a transcendent one. You, both of you – emerge from your encounter in your new skins, fitted and folded strangely and shining on the body. Show off every aspect and affect of these new faces. Let the others in on the secret that has been yours until now.



My first was Marguerite Duras. I translated her L’Amant de la Chine du nord seven ways, tied up in seven different Oulipian knots, and I felt myself grow infatuated. I let myself believe I knew her intimately, that I breathed her words and spoke her tone. I fancied myself her temporary lover, allowed access, briefly, to her deepest feelings and angles. I hope she remembers me fondly. And when one refuses your advances – speak in idioms out of spite. It is no skin off your nose. It will not get under your skin. Beauty is only skin deep. Or simply try again – there is more than one way to skin.

-Nathaniel Edwards & Emma Ramadan Editors


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N

Combined Translation of Catullus 5 & 7 An Imagining of Catullus’ classic love poems through a modern filter Translated by Evan Thomas from Latin


Catullus V Vivamus, mea Lesbia, atque amemus, Rumoresque senum severiorem Omnes unius aestimemus assis! Soles occidere et redire possunt; Nobis, cum semel occidit brevis lux, Nox est perpetua una dormienda. Da mi basia mille, deinde centum, Dein mille altera, dein secunda centum, Deinde usque altera mille, deinde centum; Dein, cum milia multa fecerimus, Conturbabimus illa, ne sciamus, Aut ne quis malus invidere possit Cum tantum sciat esse basiorum Catullus VII Quaeris, quot mihi basiationes tuae, Lesbia, sint satis superque. quam magnus numerus Libyssae harenae lasarpiciferis iacet Cyrenis oraclum Iovis inter aestuosi et Batti veteris sacrum sepulcrum; aut quam sidera multa, cum tacet nox, furtivos hominum vident amores: tam te basia multa basiare vesano satis et super Catullo est, quae nec pernumerare curiosi possint nec mala fascinare lingua.


One for the lovers “How much kissing will be enough?” You smirked and asked one Sunday morning While tinted light seeped over blankets, Your shoulders pressed against our pillow. “Not even all the grains of sand On Moody beach would be enough, Or all the stars above our heads That swirled last night around our fire. Let’s kiss from dawn ‘til dawn tomorrow, When creamy coffee stains your teeth Until you have to leave for work; Again once you come home tonight When backwash tastes of Listerine.” The corner of your sweet lips smiled; Your green eyes rolled across the room, But showed to me the love you felt. The sun can rise and set again; For you and me there’s just this life. Let’s live, let’s love, let’s waste the day Kissing and rolling more than eyes.


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N Colloque sentimental Dans le vieux parc solitaire et glacé Deux formes ont tout à l'heure passé. Leurs yeux sont morts et leurs lèvres sont molles, Et l'on entend à peine leurs paroles. Dans le vieux parc solitaire et glacé Deux spectres ont évoqué le passé. -Te souvient-il de notre extase ancienne? -Pourquoi voulez-vous donc qu'il m'en souvienne? -Ton coeur bat-il toujours à mon seul nom? Toujours vois-tu mon âme en rêve? - Non. A Sentimental Conversation by Paul Verlaine Translated by Lucy Lee

from French

Ah ! les beaux jours de bonheur indicible Où nous joignions nos bouches ! - C'est possible. -Qu'il était bleu, le ciel, et grand, l'espoir! -L'espoir a fui, vaincu, vers le ciel noir. Tels ils marchaient dans les avoines folles, Et la nuit seule entendit leurs paroles.

Les fêtes galantes


LUCY LEE A Sentimental Conversation In the old park, secluded and icy, Two figures walked by suddenly, Their eyes were dead, their lips no longer red, And one could scarcely hear what was said. In the old park, secluded and icy, Two ghosts awakened old memories. - The ecstasy of our youth, do you still recall? - Why should I remember it at all? - Does your heart, at the sound of my name still glow? Do you still see my soul in your dreams? – No. Ah! The beautiful days of ineffable happiness When our mouths would meet! – Possible, I guess. - The sky was so blue and hope, so alive! - Hope has fled, defeated, into the black sky. So through the wild oats they continued to tread, Only the night heard what was said.


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N

Pagan Proses from Amastris by Roger Santiváñez Translated by Tariq Adely

from Spanish


1 Vengo por las tardes a escribir a esta orilla del río Cooper. Me agrada el viento susurrando entre los árboles y contemplar el silbido de distintos pajarines en la copa como ésta frente a mí, que me da su dulce y fresca sombra cuando el sol todavía se resiste a morir en la distancia, sobre los edificios de Filadelfia que puedo ver desde aquí, al fondo del paisaje verde y el cielo profundamente dorado mientras otra vez el viento sagrado me habla con sus frases claras y difíciles acerca de las cambiantes nubes de estaño y el solitario césped me regala su quietud.


Hay un arbusto solito en este edén. El viento apenas remueve sus delicadas hojas pero más cerca al borde del río los insectos de la noche se aproximan con sus raros ruidos vibrantes y en este instante de belleza no hay nadie sobre el pasto, sólo voces lejanas me anuncian un par de niñas montando bicicleta en la calzada. Las aguas del río avanzan sin prisa pero sin pausa y el travieso rey solar otra vez nos hiere con sus rayos súbitamente se esconde entre los cúmulos pero mi visión permanece deslumbrada. Hay alegría al otro lado del río, pero no es la mía. No me pertenece como esta canción inmóvil.

T A R I Q A D E LY 1 I come in the evening time to write to this shore of the river Cooper. So pleased am I by the wind sighing between the trees and to contemplate the whistle of different passerines in the tree top as this one before me, that gives me its sweet and fresh shade when the sun nevertheless refuses to cease in the distance, above the buildings of Philadelphia that I can see from here, to the depths of the green landscape and the sky deeply golden while once again the sacred wind speaks to me with phrases clear and elusive about the shifting clouds of tin and the solitary patch of grass that grants me its quietude.


There is a solitary shrub in this eden. The wind hardly ruffles its delicate leaves but closer to the border of the river the insects of the night approach with their vibrant ruckus rare and in this moment of beauty there is no one upon the grass only voices distant telling me of a pair of girls riding bicycles on the pathway. The waters of the river advance without hurry but without halt and the mischievous sun king once again wounds us with his rays suddenly absconding between the clouds but my vision remains dazzled. There is joy on the river’s other shore, but it is not mine. It does not concern me like this immobile song. 13

A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N

3 Al sol le place volver. De rato en rato lo hace y con inusitado brillo. Su resplandor casi ciega estas palabras en mi cuaderno del atardecer pero nada es más bello que su melodía natural interpretada por la música divina de pronto oscurecida por mi nada interna, mas allí me salva el viento con su baile sensitivo de ramajes despiertos e innombrados árboles artistas. Ya los autos a lo lejos han prendido sus luces y un avión es capaz de surcar el cielo cuando las nubes modifican su diseño. Es de tarde en mi poema y las cigarras se apresuran. 4

Ahora que el viento se hace fuerte en las manzanas, debo regresar a los brazos de mi amor. Parece que el sol definitivamente ya no saldrá del fondo de esas nubes doradas y perla. Siento que este día se termina como una canción que los pajarines ya no pudieran interpretar con sus frágiles instrumentos. Pero yo sé que mañana volveré a componer la cuculí que ahora me arrulla. De pronto el sol es un disco naranja y baja cada vez más en el horizonte de esta soledad, es un ojo rojo a través de pino escuchad: respira la idolatría de aire. Y el intocado vergel a mi costado.



3 It pleases the sun to return. From time to time it does so and with unusual brilliance. It radiance almost blinds these words of mine in the book that binds my dusk writings but nothing is more beautiful than its natural melody interpreted through music divine suddenly darkened by my internal nothingness, but there the wind saves me with its dance perceptive of awakened branches and unnamed arboreal artists. The cars far in the distance have turned on their lights and a plane can cleave the sky when the clouds modify the design. It is evening in my poem and the cicadas hasten. 4

Now that the wind grows strong through the apples, I must return to the arms of my love. It seems certain that the sun will no longer emerge from the depths of those golden clouds and pearl. I sense this day ending like a song that the passerines no longer can perform with their fragile instruments. But I know tomorrow I will return to compose the cuckoo that lulls me. All of a sudden the sun is an orange disc and ever lower on the horizon of this solitude, is a red eye traversing pine listen: it breathes the idolatry of air. And the untouched orchard at my side.


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N 5 Veo la luz oscura, toda la Realidad está en penumbra a esta hora en que escribo una página para no olvidar mi oficio. Para saber soñar todavía con esta luz que se difumina y se va deshaciendo en la floresta, mientras me baña un viento feliz como el tiempo que recorre a las parejas de amantes abrazándose en sus lechos. Entro en pánico en estas soledades donde nadie agita una sonrisa, sino el murmullo del suave fluir del río y sus ondas destinadas a sabe Dios qué mar, qué playa que no manyo ahora que el disco naranja ya está al nivel de la tierra y me consume irremediable. 6

Mejor vámonos le digo a Josephine pero ella prefiere husmear cada brizna del jardín Se queda quieta como la sonrisa de Leonardo quizá exhausta de vagar por los caminos de este parque en su crepúsculo para que yo escriba unas canciones con la música del aire y de la solitaria protección de algunos árboles, de la luz que ya declina y me invita a llorar. 16

T A R I Q A D E LY 5 I see the dim light, all Reality resides in penumbra at this time in which I write a page so as not to forget my trade. To learn to dream still with this light that fades and wastes away in the lush grove, while I am bathed by a wind blissful like time as it sweeps over lovers entwined in their beds. I am stricken with panic within these solitudes where no one stirs up a smile, but only the murmur of the river’s soft flowing, its waves destined for what sea or shore, God knows, I can no longer digest now that the orange disc already is level with the land and it consumes me irremediable. 6

It’s best we move along I tell Josephine but she prefers to snoop around every inch of the garden She remains silent like the smile of Leonardo perhaps exhausted from roaming the roads of this park at its twilight so that I might write songs with the music of air and of the solitary protection of a few trees, of the light that by now declines and moves me to cry. 17

A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N

Selections from Ulrike Almut Sandig & Lutz Seiler Translated by Bradley Schmidt

from German

geht das Licht aus, bist du wieder allein. oder bist du, Obdacht!, doch nicht allein? hast du’s gehört, das hässliche pechschwarze Reiterlein, hast du den Haareverknoter, der immer zu Unzeiten stört, hast du den Nachtalb gehört, wie er im Sprung von einer zu dunklen Zimmerecke zur andern den Pferdeschwanz übers Parkett zieht? findet er dich, lacht er sich kaputt oder wiegt dich mit leichtem Druck auf die Kehle – sanft in den Schlaf. -----------------------

immer viel zu spät aufstehn und immer ist mir zu kalt. immer denk ich ans Heimgehn und heimlich im eigenen Zimmer: an mich und niemanden sonst. immer verrenk ich beim Strecken der eigenen Knochen: dich. weiter nichts machen. wochenlang schlafen zur Übung fürs Wegsein in völliger Abwesenheit meines eigenen Namens. nur zweimal im Monat träumen. einmal von den kahlen Bäumen zu Hause. ein anderes Mal von Neuschnee und wie er Decken und Kissen und Laken einschneit.


BRADLEY SCHMIDT the light goes out and you’re alone again. or are you, watch out! not really alone? did you hear it, the ugly horseman black as pitch, hear the hair-knotter always bothering at the worst of times, did you hear the nightmare, how he pulls his horse tail over the floor, jumping from one corner to the other? if he finds you he’ll laugh himself to death or rock you gently choking your throat – peacefully to sleep. - - - - - - - -from Ulrike Almut Sandig always getting up too late and always being too cold. always thinking about sneaking home and secretly in my own room: about myself and no one else. while stretching my own joints I always wrench: you not doing anything else. sleeping for weeks as practice for being away in complete absence of my own name. only dreaming twice a month. once about the naked trees at home. another time about fresh snow and how it covers blankets and pillows and sheets.


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N Tamangur Ulrike Almut Sandig draußen kommt Wind auf. drinnen halten wir still die Gesichter über Atlanten gebeugt. im Fensterkreuz schießen uns Kiefern über die Köpfe, um unser Zimmer herum wächst ein Wald! nennen wir ihn „Tamangur“, weil alles, was da ist, ein Wort haben muss, das man aufschreiben kann. mein Bruder, mein Bruder, wann haben wir uns bloß hierher verirrt, hast du den Rückweg gar nicht markiert? Schwesterlein, Schwester, alles hab ich vergessen: das Brot und die Namen der Vögel, die Ortszeit, den Teerweg zurück. alle Sachen wie Straßen, wie Airports, wie Luftverkehr, Ampeln stehen auf anderen Karten verzeichnet. also bleiben wir hier im Zimmer im Wald, den keiner, du nicht und ich auch nicht, noch einmal verlässt, kaum dass er (wie gleich?) benannt ist. draußen reiben die Kiefern sich gegeneinander, greift Wind in die Bäume, auch ihre Namen hab ich vergessen. du nennst sie „die mit den harten, den ledernen Nadeln“, ihre faustgroßen Nüsse fallen zwischen den Falten der Stämme herab und treffen uns nicht. im Zimmer liegst du. daneben lieg ich und kenne dich –



the wind outside picks up. inside we hold our faces still, leaned over the atlases. in the window the pines shoot above our heads, a forest grows around our room! let’s call it “Tamangur” because everything there has to have a word that you can write down. my brother, my brother when could we have ever wandered here, didn’t you even mark the way back? dear sister, dear sister, I forgot everything: the bread and the names of the birds, the time, the asphalt road back. everything like streets, like airports, like air travel, traffic lights are marked on other maps. so we stay here in the room in the forest that nobody leaves again, not you and not me either, as soon as it (come again) is named. outside the pines rub against each other, the wind reaches into the trees, whose names we have also forgotten. you call them “the ones with the hard, the leathery needles,” their fist-sized nuts fall down between the wrinkles of the trunks and do not hit us. you lie in the room. I lie next to you, not knowing –


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N

wenn die Lautsprecher aus sind und die Spots abgestellt, wenn der letzte Sprechchor verklungen sein wird im Backstagebereich der Geschichte wenn die Kost체muniformen weggeh채ngt sind die Putzkolonne verschwunden sein wird, wenn der Zuschauerraum still im Halbdunkel liegt dann stellen Sie sich noch mal auf die B체hne und sprechen mir nach: es war alles nicht echt. es ist niemand zu Schaden gekommen. also sprechen Sie nach: es war alles nicht STOP



when the speakers are out and the spots are turned off, when the last chorus has faded in the backstage greenroom of history when the costume uniforms are hung up the cleaning crew has disappeared, when the audience area lies silent in shadows then step back onto the stage once more and repeat after me: all of this was not real. no one was harmed. so repeat after me: all of this was not STOP


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N

4 ich sehe was, was du nicht siehst, das ist: diese unvorsichtig erratene geschwisterlichkeit in meinen + deinen pupillen. siehst du, wir sind: paarweise, sobald ich dich und sobald du mich siehst, geblendet vom blitzen, vom rätseln, vom sitzen im licht, vor hitze gelähmt. auf halber strecke zur mitte der körper wird nicht eine bewegung verzeichnet. die eigene vorsicht hin oder her, mir reicht die gleichzeitige bergung deines + meines anblicks im blindflug, kinderspiel, doppeltem kopf.


als ich wegging, war Nachmittag schon vorbei. Verspätete Kinder fegten sich selber vom Spielplatz in die Gebäude. Nicht sichtbar zischten die ersten Raketen, noch überhörbar wummerte Bass. der Straßenrand war in einigem Abstand von abgeschmückten Bäumen bewölkt, die rochen nach Schaumgras im Hochwald, im Halbschlaf darüber die echten Wolken im Windloch, Polarlicht, beißendem Eis. einmal fiel Milchglas im Stück vor mich hin. Eh ich drauftreten konnte sackte es weg. dann ging ich endlich los. danach hab ich alles was hier steht, vergessen. zu Neujahr war ich zurück.



i spy with my little eye: this carelessly divined siblinghood in my + your pupils. you spy what we are: paired as soon as i see you and as soon as you see me, blinded by lightning, by riddles, by sitting in the sun, paralyzed by the heat. halfway to the middle of our bodies no movement is registered. the own caution regardless, i am content with the simultaneous recovery of your + my view flying blind, children’s game, doubled head.

the afternoon was already past when I left. delayed children swept from the playground into the building. invisible, the first rockets hissed, the bass can still be heard humming. the roadside was overcast at some distance by naked trees that smelled of

lady’s smock in the high forest, dozily above the real clouds in wind holes, polar light, biting ice. once a piece of milk glass fell in front of me. before I could step on it it sank away. then I finally left. afterwards I forgot everything lying here. I came back for new year.


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N herbst


ist stille & gebrauch. der herbst ist harke, holz, ist milde kühle auf den augen & eine zufallsgänsehaut. ist auch das gute alte kampfgefühl, leise, heimlich, schädelstill altern die entwürfe. das laub verbrannt, der sand noch warm unter der asche, du spürst es jetzt an deiner hand: etwas will weg & etwas nie verreisen. so geht man einfach ganz nach hinten, hinters haus. man fällt ins gras & schaut: globenbeleuchtung, erdumdrehung auf den nachbarterrassen. Einmal heimat & zurück glänzt es von den hundeketten. „gott was sind die kieferspitzen plötzlich oben rot!“ & unter der erde liegen die toten & halten die enden der wurzeln im mund


BRADLEY SCHMIDT - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -from Lutz Seiler


is silence & use. autumn is rake, wood, is mild chill on the eyes & chance goose bumps. is also the good old fighting feeling, quiet, secretly, skull still the attempts age. the leaves burnt, the sand still warm under the ashes, you feel it now on your hand: something wants to leave & something never travel. so you simply go way back, behind the house. you fall into the grass & and gaze: globe illumination, earth rotation on the neighbor’s terraces. Once home & back it glistens from the dog tags. “lord how suddenly red those pine tips are up there!� & under the earth the dead lie & and hold the ends of the roots in their mouths


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N hüte dich als kinder wollten wir immer in andere länder marschieren, aber am waldrand waren wir alt & mußten zurück. ein augapfel die mutter, ein augapfel der vater; & mußten wir abends zur zeit nach haus, so rollten uns beide voraus

was ich besaß in der bogenschrift des ackers glänzten ein paar glasbausteine, büschel gras & kleine gebeine: wie alles beieinander liegt zum schluß. anstieg, aufstieg & so war viel morsen, funken, scheitern um die füße, schritt für schritt. ich hatte die kapuze dicht am ohr, das läuten der arme, die feine schabende arbeit des mantels, vor zurück, zurück & vor – mein schleichendes quartier. ging ich langsam, war es leiser & blieb ich einmal stehn, so war ich fast gestorben 28

BRADLEY SCHMIDT beware as children we always wanted to march into other countries, but at the wood’s edge we were old & had to return. the apple of one eye the mother, the apple of one eye the father; & we had to be back home on time, so both rolled ahead of us

what i possessed in the field’s curved script a few glass bricks glistened, bunches of grass & small bones: how in the end everything lies close together. rise, climb & so there was much morse, transmission, collapse around the feet, step for step. i had the hood closes to my ears, the sound of the arms, the coat’s fine scraping work, back forth, forth & back – my creeping quarters. i went slowly, it was quiet & i stood still once, so once i had died


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N zum himmel mit den ersten flocken fällt das staunen zurück in die offenen münder. das unbegreifliche: es schmeckt nach nichts, aber etwas tönt in der brust & vergeht auf der zunge leise reiselt der schnee. & also erwachen all die ungeköpften träume & den schädel weit im nacken zieht mich reine weiß geflockte dunkelheit & eine schmelze süßer gier am gaumen steig ich auf in diesen raum

ende mag sein, das war nicht unser ende, nur die pause wie ein schweigen plötzlich eintrifft im gespräch. wir warteten auf wind&kühle, aber wind&kühle kam nicht auf. mag sein ich schwieg zu laut, ich atmete ins kerzenlicht & ein insekt, das schlief verbrannte. alles, seine flügel, fühler beine, alles stellte sich noch einmal auf, geriet in ordnung, glänzte & in der hitze, winzig, ein gesicht angestaut mit augen 30

BRADLEY SCHMIDT to heaven with the first flakes astonishment falls back in the open mouths. what’s incomprehesible: it tastes of nothing, but something in the chest resounds & melts on the tongue the snow flutters quietly. & thus all awake the unbeheaded dreams & the skull deep into the neck pulls me in white flakes darkness & a melting sweetness greed on the gums i arise in this space

end could be that was not our end, just the pause like a silence suddenly appears in the conversation. we waited for wind&chill, but wind&chill did not arise. could be i was too loudly silent, i breathed into the candlelight & an insect that slept burned up. everything, its wings, antenna legs, everything erected itself once more, arranged itself, glistened & in the heat, tiny, a face bottled up with eyes 31

A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N

Selections from Desnos, Corbière, Tardieu, Prudhomme, & Vian Translated by Christopher Anderson

from French


Âgé de cent-mille ans, j’aurais encore la force De t’attendre, o demain pressenti par l’espoir. Le temps, vieillard souffrant de multiples entorses, Peut gémir: neuf est le matin, neuf est le soir. Mais depuis trop de mois nous vivons à la veille, Nous veillons, nous gardons la lumière et le feu, Nous parlons à voix basse et nous tendons l’oreille A maint bruit vite éteint et perdu comme au jeu. Or, du fond de la nuit, nous témoignons encore De la splendeur du jour et de tous ses présents. Si nous ne dormons pas c’est pour guetter l’aurore Qui prouvera qu’enfin nous vivons au présent.

Robert Desnos (1900-1945), État de veille (1942)


CHRISTOPHER ANDERSON Tomorrow A million years old, I’d have strength enough still To wait for you, O tomorrow in hope’s foresight. Time, an old man, by all his many strains made ill, Can whimper: new is the morning, new is the night. But for too many months we’ve lived as yesteryear, We grow old, we look after the light and the fire, We speak with lowered voice and offer up our ear, As if at play, to lost noises quick to expire. And yet, at the end of night, we still testify To the day’s splendor, to its every present. If we don’t sleep, it’s to await dawn, which thereby Will prove that, after all, we live in the present.


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N le Paria Ma pensée est un souffle aride : C’est l’air. L’air est à moi partout. Et ma parole est l’écho vide Qui ne dit rien - et c’est tout. Tristan Corbière (1845-1875)

Conversation (sur le pas de la porte, avec bonhomie.) Comment ça va sur la terre? - Ça va ça va, ça va bien. Les petits chiens sont-ils prospères? - Mon Dieu oui merci bien. Et les nuages? - Ça flotte. Et les volcans? - Ça mijote. Et les fleuves? - Ça s’écoule. Et le temps? - Ça se déroule. Et votre âme? - Elle est malade le printemps était trop vert elle a mangé trop de salade. Jean Tardieu (1903-1995), Monsieur Monsieur


CHRISTOPHER ANDERSON The Pariah My thought is an arid breath: It’s air. The air is mine everywhere. And my speech is the empty echo That doesn’t say anything – and that’s it.

Conversation (on the doorstep, with bonhomie) How’s it going on earth? - It’s okay, it’s pretty good. Are the little dogs prosperous? - My God yes thank you very much so. And the clouds? - They’re floating. And the volcanoes? - They’re stewing. And the rivers? - They’re flowing. And the time? - It goes on And your soul? - It’s sick. spring was too green it ate too much salad. 35

A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N Un Songe Le laboureur m’a dit en songe : « Fais ton pain ; Je ne te nourris pas ; gratte la terre et sème. » Le tisserand m’a dit : « Fais tes habits toi-même. » Et le maçon m’a dit : « Prends la truelle en main. » Et seul, abandonné de tout le genre humain, Dont je traînais partout l’implacable anathème, Quand j’implorais du ciel une pitié suprême, Je trouvais des lions debout dans mon chemin. J’ouvris les yeux, doutant si l’aube était réelle ; De hardis compagnons sifflaient sur leurs échelles, Les métiers bourdonnaient, les champs étaient semés. Je connus mon bonheur, et qu’au monde où nous sommes Nul ne peut se vanter de se passer des hommes ; Et depuis ce jour-là, je les ai tous aimés.

Sully Prudhomme (1839-1907), Stances et poèmes



A Dream

I dreamed the ploughman said: “Make your own bread; I’m feeding you no more: go sow the land.” The weaver: “I’ll not weave another thread.” The mason told me: “Take this trowel in hand.” And all alone, abandoned by mankind, Whose curse I bore each place that I did stray, As I from God did pity hope to find, I spotted lions standing in my way. I opened up my eyes – was dawn revealed? I heard my bold companions’ whistling mirth, The looms were buzzing; they had sown the field. I knew my happiness, that on this earth No man can brag that he lives all alone; And I have loved them all, since that dawn shone.


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N

La vie, c’est comme une dent La vie, c’est comme une dent D’abord on y a pas pensé On s’est contenté de mâcher Et puis ça se gâte soudain Ça vous fait mal, et on y tient Et on la soigne et les soucis Et pour qu’on soit vraiment guéri Il faut vous l’arracher, la vie.

Boris Vian (1920-1959)



The Life You Lead is Like a Tooth The life you lead is like a tooth. At first, no thought’s directed there And you just chew without a care And then it rots out of the blue It hurts and feels so dear to you You prize the worry thereabout And can’t be healed beyond a doubt Until such time as it’s yanked out.


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N subterra

Three poems by Esther Ramón Translated by Forrest Gander

from Spanish


el humo de las chimeneas dibuja un óvalo sobre la roca el pico los pájaros en celdas el miedo al gas dinamitamos precarias galerías nos abrimos paso al ritmo de la polea el ascensor de los que descienden maneja la precisión de las herramientas un obstáculo tangentes ahora la sirena


smoke from chimneys inscribes an oval over the rock the beak the canaries in cages fear of firedamp we dynamite exquisite galleries we dig our way to the rhythm of an elevator hoist for those who go down the mechanisms are trued by their obstacle on a tangent now the siren


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N


sigilo junto al horno estĂŠril todos duermen la trampilla cubierta de tierra y una escalera oblicua abajo estatuas nuevas la sed de la linterna dibuja elipses en los sacos vacĂ­os un rastro de trigo bajo la herrumbre de las herramientas una espantada de ratas que argumenta




stealthy by the sterile stove everyone asleep the trapdoor covered with dirt and a ladder slanted down new statues the flashlight’s thirst tracing ellipses over empty bags a dash of wheat under the iron taste of tools a panic of rats squabbles


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N


detrĂĄs de los ĂĄrboles niĂąas que pintan sus brazos y duermen sobre hojas friccionan las patas son grillos liberados el sol les arruga las manos se remangan para lavarles la ropa y sus pinturas relucen como gemas venenosas como luces de nitrato




behind the trees girls who paint their arms and sleep on leaves rub their feet are escaped crickets the sun wrinkles their hands rolling up sleeves so they can wash their clothes and their paintings gleam like venomous gems like nitrate lights


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N


From 가슴에 새긴 미화 (The Blossom Inscribed In My Heart) By Ki-Dong Kim Translated by Eunice Kim

from Korean

겨울이 녹고 여름에 서리 내리는 이변의 진실 그리움에 애가 타는 영혼의 꽃잎 주고 싶고 받고 싶은 추억의 낙엽 별들이 숨어서 보고 달이 질투하다가 날이 새고 멀리서 개 짖는 소리에 할 말도 많다면서 할 말이 없는 허공의 글씨 천둥치며 비 내릴 때 가슴에 그린 미화 (美花) 숨어서 하는 사랑이 참으로 뜨겁더라



Melting in winter Frosting in July Truth behind mishaps The flames of a soul burn with longing. Desiring the giver and the receiver Are the fallen leaves of memories. Stars peeking out, hiding The moon envying the breaking dawn with the sound of dogs barking far away, There is so much to say, but the empty letters have no words to speak. To the sound of thunder and rain the blossoms inscribed in the heart of a hidden love burned hotly indeed!


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N

송죽 화단

사시사철 푸르청청 내가 좋아 심었더니 해마다 새 순이 나오고 뿌리는 멀리 뻗어간다 내가 심은 초록 나무 사철 푸른 절개 나무 다른 빛깔 관심 없고 제 색깔만 고집한다



Garden of Bamboo and Pine

Ever green all four seasons, Would be my choice of trees to plant. Sprouting fresh leaves every year, They’d stretch their roots to all corners. Trees of green, my choice of plants, Trees of faith, forever more green. To hell with the other shades, To their own color they stick.


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N


서해의 바람을 맞으며 숨결을 낮춘다 순풍이든 강풍이든 견뎌야 할 운명 중국에서 날아오는 황사에도 남쪽에서 불어오는 태풍에도 온 몸으로 막으려는 외로운 사명자 동향한 기운 몸뚱이가 거친 세월을 말해준다



Black Pine by the Seaside

Breath lowered, Enduring the poundings of Western Wind, The one destined for endurance, Anything fair or rough. Be it a raging Chinese sandstorm Be it a thundering Southern hurricane The lone one Wills to block with its whole body The bent body facing east Tells a rough history


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N

Ett sagospel

Selections from Bye, Have a Good Time! By Kristina Lugn Translated by Mariela Griffor

from Swedish


Ett sagospel över förorterna. En liten flicka på väg till sitt skiftarbete möter ingen under äppelträden. Skimrande minnesluckor på balkongerna. Hovdamer tältar i hotbilden. Mangeltorra skridskoprinsessor skär djupt. Spjälsängar. Livsfarliga ledningar mellan människorna. Och en kirurg utan kirurgtejp. En munter dagisfröken med polishölster stimulerar fantasin.


A fairy-tale

A fairy-tale over the suburbs. A little girl On the way to her work shift meets nobody under an apple tree. Shimmering blackouts on the balconies. Court ladies camp in the threat. Dry iced marzipan princess cake cut deeply. Cribs. Lethal lines between people. And a surgeon without surgical tape. A cheerful nanny with a police holster stimulates the imagination.


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N

Tungrodd kärlek

Tungrodd kärlek. Småfåglars skrik på min födelsedag. Lakan. Läskpapper. Vad är det som luktar? Is på rondellerna! Kungsvägen till mannens hjärta är avspärrad. Det finns en slaktare mellan raderna. Ingen kommer här fram! Tiden läker inga sår. Världen har sitt täcke av sommar och snö.



Cumbersome love

Cumbersome love. Small birds cry on my birthday. Sheets. Blotting paper. What’s that smell? Ice on the pads! The royal road to the man heart is blocked. There is a butcher between the lines. No one will be here! Time heals no wounds. The world has its cover of summer and snow.


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N

Aldrig har hag älskat

Aldrig har hag älskat så många män som nu när gallergrindarna gått i baklås om min jungfrukammare. Och natten är av järn. Försvarsmakten är av järn. Jag är en fri människa. Det har jag alltid vetat och aldrig förstått.

Den som inte är bunden vid någonting faller

Den som inte är bunden vid någonting faller. Det är inte alltid ett dödsfall. Ibland räcker det med en hjärnskakning. Och en skadad självbild. Det är synd att det bara är lagsporter som har supporterklubbar.



Never has the hag loved

Never has the hag loved so many men as now when the grid gates passed the dead-lock of my maid’s room And the night is of iron. The armed forces are of iron. I am a free man. I’ve always known and never understood.

Those who are not bound by anything fall

Those who are not bound by anything fall. It is not always a death. Sometimes only a concussion. And a damaged self-image. It is a pity that it is only team sports that have supporter clubs.


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N Book 1, lines 1-45

Selections from Dionysiaca By Nonnus Translated by Andrew Barrett

from Ancient Greek


εἰπέ, θεά, Κρονίδαο διάκτορον αἴθοπος αὐγῆς, νυμφιδίῳ σπινθῆρι μογοστόκον ἄσθμα κεραυνοῦ, καὶ στεροπὴν Σεμέλης θαλαμηπόλον: εἰπὲ δὲ φύτλην Βάκχου δισσοτόκοιο, τὸν ἐκ πυρὸς ὑγρὸν ἀείρας 5Ζεὺς βρέφος ἡμιτέλεστον ἀμαιεύτοιο τεκούσης, φειδομέναις παλάμῃσι τομὴν μηροῖο χαράξας, ἄρσενι γαστρὶ λόχευσε, πατὴρ καὶ πότνια μήτηρ, εὖ εἰδὼς τόκον ἄλλον, ἐπεὶ γονόεντι καρήνῳ, ἄσπορον ὄγκον ἄπιστον ἔχων ἐγκύμονι κόρσῃ, 10τεύχεσιν ἀστράπτουσαν ἀνηκόντιζεν Ἀθήνην. ἄξατέ μοι νάρθηκα, τινάξατε κύμβαλα, Μοῦσαι, καὶ παλάμῃ δότε θύρσον ἀειδομένου Διονύσου: ἀλλὰ χοροῦ ψαύοντα, Φάρῳ παρὰ γείτονι νήσῳ, στήσατέ μοι Πρωτῆα πολύτροπον, ὄφρα φανείη 15ποικίλον εἶδος ἔχων, ὅτι ποικίλον ὕμνον ἀράσσω: εἰ γὰρ ἐφερπύσσειε δράκων κυκλούμενος ὁλκῷ, μέλψω θεῖον ἄεθλον, ὅπως κισσώδεϊ θύρσῳ φρικτὰ δρακοντοκόμων ἐδαΐζετο φῦλα Γιγάντων: εἰ δὲ λέων φρίξειεν ἐπαυχενίην τρίχα σείων, 20Βάκχον ἀνευάξω βλοσυρῆς ἐπὶ πήχεϊ Ῥείης μαζὸν ὑποκλέπτοντα λεοντοβότοιο θεαίνης: εἰ δὲ θυελλήεντι μετάρσιος ἅλματι ταρσῶν πόρδαλις ἀίξῃ πολυδαίδαλον εἶδος ἀμείβων, ὑμνήσω Διὸς υἷα, πόθεν γένος ἔκτανεν Ἰνδῶν 25πορδαλίων ὀχέεσσι καθιππεύσας ἐλεφάντων: εἰ δέμας ἰσάζοιτο τύπῳ συός, υἷα Θυώνης ἀείσω ποθέοντα συοκτόνον εὔγαμον Αὔρην,

ANDREW BARRETT Speak Goddess, of Cronodies’ luminous herald, the thunder rolling amid coital sparks the lightning flash, bridegroom of Semele. Speak of the line of twice-born Bacchus, a child half-formed and delivered without midwife, whom Zeus raised from the flames dripping wet and carried within his male womb as father and sacred mother, when he cut open his own thigh with flinching hands and vividly recalled another birth: his brow was swollen and his temples throbbed with an immaculate yet adulterous pain before he launched forth Athene, her armor glinting in the light. Muses, bring me the fennel stalk, clash the cymbals and place in my hand the thyrsus of Dionysus infused with song. For my partner in the cyclic dance, summon quicksilver Proteus from the nearby island of Pharos. May he appear in myriad shapes as I weave an intricate mercurial hymn. If he slithers like a serpent trailing a spiral path, I will celebrate the god’s triumph, how he destroyed with ivy-twined thyrsus 59

A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N ὀψιγόνου τριτάτοιο Κυβηλίδα μητέρα Βάκχου: εἰ δὲ πέλοι μιμηλὸν ὕδωρ, Διόνυσον ἀείσω 30κόλπον ἁλὸς δύνοντα κορυσσομένοιο Λυκούργου: εἰ φυτὸν αἰθύσσοιτο νόθον ψιθύρισμα τιταίνων, μνήσομαι Ἰκαρίοιο, πόθεν παρὰ θυιάδι ληνῷ βότρυς ἁμιλλητῆρι ποδῶν ἐθλίβετο ταρσῷ. Ἄξατέ μοι νάρθηκα, Μιμαλλόνες, ὠμαδίην δὲ 35νεβρίδα ποικιλόνωτον ἐθήμονος ἀντὶ χιτῶνος σφίγξατέ μοι στέρνοισι, Μαρωνίδος ἔμπλεον ὀδμῆς νεκταρέης, βυθίῃ δὲ παρ᾽ Εἰδοθέῃ καὶ Ὁμήρῳ φωκάων βαρὺ δέρμα φυλασσέσθω Μενελάῳ. εὔιά μοι δότε ῥόπτρα καὶ αἰγίδας, ἡδυμελῆ δὲ 40ἄλλῳ δίθροον αὐλὸν ὀπάσσατε, μὴ καὶ ὀρίνω Φοῖβον ἐμόν: δονάκων γὰρ ἀναίνεται ἔμπνοον ἠχώ, ἐξ ὅτε Μαρσύαο θεημάχον αὐλὸν ἐλέγξας δέρμα παρῃώρησε φυτῷ κολπούμενον αὔραις, γυμνώσας ὅλα γυῖα λιπορρίνοιο νομῆος.


ANDREW BARRETT the shuddering race of snake-haired Giants. If as a lion he shakes his flowing mane, I will shout Evoi to Bacchus on the arm of voluptuous Rhea, nursing slyly at the breast of the lion-rearing goddess. If as a leopard he springs from his heels, variegating his form in mid-air, I will hymn the son of Zeus who trampled elephants upon his saddled leopards when he slaughtered the race of India. If he likens his body to the shape of a boar, I will sing of Thyone’s son sick at heart for seductive Aura, boar killer daughter of Cybele and mother of the late-born third Bacchus. If he is the image of water in a mirror I will intone the name of Dionysus and tell of how he plunged beneath the rolling sea with Lycurgus in armed pursuit. If he becomes a tree rustling in the breeze with artificial whispers, I will remember Icarius, when he crushed the divine grape with zealous feet in the wine press. Mimallons, bring me the fennel stalk and instead of the chiton drape over my shoulders and cinch about my chest a mottled fawn-skin awash in the sweet smell 61

A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N

Book Four, 249-359 καὶ πλόον ἤνυσε Κάδμος ἐς Ἑλλάδα, Φοιβάδος ὀμφῆς 250οἶστρον ἔχων πραπίδεσσι, Διὸς δέ οἱ αἰὲν ἐπείγων ἔνθεος ἀπλανέεσσιν ἐπέτρεχε μῦθος ἀκουαῖς. ἔνθα Πανελλήνεσσι νεώτερα δῶρα τιταίνων ἀρχεκάκου Δαναοῖο φερέσβιον ἔκρυφε τέχνην, ὑδροφόρου Δαναοῖο: τί γὰρ πλέον εὗρεν Ἀχαιοῖς, 255εἴ ποτε χαλκείῃσι πεδοσκαφέεσσι μακέλλαις χάσματος οὐδαίοιο χυτὸν κενεῶνα κολάψας δίψιον Ἄργος ἔπαυσε, κονιομένοις δὲ πολίταις 62

ANDREW BARRETT of Maronian nectar. Eidothea and Homer can keep the burden of Menelaus’ sealskins, grant for another the honeyed song of the double aulos. Give me Bacchic drums and goatskins. For I do not wish to insult my patron, Phoebus Apollo. He has spurned the sound of the breathing reeds ever since he humiliated Marsyas and his god-combative aulos, draping the skin of the flayed shepherd on a tree to ripple in the breeze. But now Goddess begin with wandering Cadmus and his quest.

Cadmus completed his sea-voyage to Hellas, his mind stung by Apollo’s prophetic voice. The divine word of Zeus also spurred him on as it echoed insistently through his open ears. In Hellas he would offer new gifts to all Greeks and eclipse the life-giving art of Danaus, bringer of water and source of mischief. Danaus, who scratched at the ground with a bronze pick-axe until he struck hidden waters and quenched the thirst of Argos. His fellow citizens, once covered in dust, were destined to climb their ladders with wet feet. But what more did Danaus do for the Achaeans, besides bring this gift of water, a mere trickle retrieved from the Earth’s yawning crevices?


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N ὑγρὰ ποδῶν ἐπίβαθρα πόρεν, ξεινήιον ὕδωρ, ἐκ βυθίων λαγόνων ὀλίγον ῥόον; αὐτὰρ ὁ πάσῃ 260Ἑλλάδι φωνήεντα καὶ ἔμφρονα δῶρα κομίζων γλώσσης ὄργανα τεῦξεν ὁμόθροα, συμφυέος δὲ ἁρμονίης στοιχηδὸν ἐς ἄζυγα σύζυγα μίξας γραπτὸν ἀσιγήτοιο τύπον τορνώσατο σιγῆς, πάτρια θεσπεσίης δεδαημένος ὄργια τέχνης, 265Αἰγυπτίης σοφίης μετανάστιος, ἦμος Ἀγήνωρ Μέμφιδος ἐνναέτης ἑκατόμπυλον ᾤκισε Θήβην: καί, ζαθέων ἄρρητον ἀμελγόμενος γάλα βίβλων, χειρὸς ὀπισθοπόροιο χαράγματα λοξὰ χαράσσων ἔγραφεν ἀγκύλα κύκλα: καὶ Αἰγυπτίου Διονύσου 270εὔια φοιτητῆρος Ὀσίριδος ὄργια φαίνων μύστιδος ἐννυχίας τελετὰς ἐδιδάσκετο τέχνης, καὶ κρυφίῃ μάγον ὕμνον ἀνέκλαγε θυιάδι φωνῇ λεπτὸν ἔχων ὀλόλυγμα: λιθοξοάνοιο δὲ νηοῦ γλυπτὰ βαθυνομένῳ κεχαραγμένα δαίδαλα τοίχῳ 275κουρίζων δεδάηκε: πολυφράστῳ δὲ μενοινῇ μετρήσας φλογόεσσαν ἀνηρίθμων ἴτυν ἄστρων καὶ δρόμον Ἠελίοιο μαθὼν καὶ μέτρον ἀρούρης, χειρὸς ἐυστροφάλιγγος ὁμόπλοκα δάκτυλα κάμψας, ἄστατα κύκλα νόησε παλιννόστοιο Σελήνης, 280πῶς τρισσαῖς ἑλίκεσσι μετάτροπον εἶδος ἀμείβει, ἀρτιφαής, διχόμηνις, ὅλῳ στίλβουσα προσώπῳ, πῶς δὲ συναπτομένη καὶ ἀπόρρυτος ἄρσενι πυρσῷ ἠελίου γενετῆρος ἀμήτορι τίκτεται αἴγλῃ, πατρὸς ὑποκλέπτουσα παλιμφυὲς αὐτόγονον πῦρ. 285τοῖος ἔην: καὶ κραιπνὸς Ἀχαιίδος ἄστεα βαίνων ναυτιλίην μεθέηκε: σὸν Ἁρμονίῃ δὲ κομίζων 64

ANDREW BARRETT Cadmus gained the gifts of intellect and language for all Hellas and crafted tools for mirroring speech. To form the alphabet, he mingled vowels and consonants in a smooth harmonious row and engraved the letters upon a rounded tablet, a silent exemplar of sound. Although a foreigner, he was initiated into secret rites of Egyptian wisdom passed down through generations while his father Agenor founded hundred-gated Thebes after nine years in Memphis. He expressed the forbidden milk of sacred books, copying out cryptic inscriptions in a flowing hand, his stylus moving from right to left. He studied the occult knowledge of midnight rituals and intoned a magical hymn in an inspired tongue that quivered with the presence of the god, offering up ecstatic cries in a hoarse voice. Thus he illuminated the numinous rites of wandering Osiris, the Dionysus of Egypt. As a boy, he studied the intricate symbols carved deep into the walls of a temple filled with statues. His great mind teeming, he reckoned the luminous circuit of the myriad stars, learned the course of the Sun and measured the size of the Earth. Curving his palm and intertwining his fingers, he made complex calculations with his hands. He knew the cyclic pattern of the changeful Moon, how she alters her rotating form in three phases: waxing, waning and shining full with gleaming face. He knew that her radiance is born without mother when she passes through the blaze of her father, the Sun and steals his self-born eternal flame. Such was the breadth of Cadmus’ knowledge. So, he left the sea and went swiftly towards Achaean cities. With his companion Harmonia, he gathered together a mass of his former sea-faring companions and set out with horse-carriages and supply wagons for Apollo’s


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N ἑσμὸν ἁλιπλανέων ἑτάρων χερσαῖον ὁδίτην ἅρμασιν ἱππείοισι καὶ ἀχθοφόροισιν ἁμάξαις μαντῴοις ἀδύτοισιν ἐπέστιχεν: ἔνθα κιχήσας 290Δελφὸν ἀσιγήτοιο μεσόμφαλον ἄξονα Πυθοῦς μαντοσύνην ἐρέεινε, καὶ ἔμφρονα Πύθιος ἄξων κυκλόθεν αὐτοβόητος ἐθέσπισε κοιλάδι φωνῇ: ‘Κάδμε, μάτην, περίφοιτε, πολυπλανὲς ἴχνος ἑλίσσεις: μαστεύεις τινὰ ταῦρον, ὃν οὐ βοέη τέκε γαστήρ, 295μαστεύεις τινὰ ταῦρον, ὃν οὐ βροτὸς οἶδε κιχῆσαι: Ἀσσυρίην ἀπόειπε, τεῆς δ᾽ ἡγήτορα πομπῆς ἄμφεπε βοῦν χθονίην, μὴ δίζεο ταῦρον Ὀλύμπου: νυμφίον Εὐρώπης οὐ βουκόλος οἶδεν ἐλαύνειν: οὐ νομόν, οὐ λειμῶνα μετέρχεται, οὔ τινι κέντρῳ 300πείθεται, οὐ μάστιγι κελεύεται: οἶδεν ἀείρειν Κύπριδος ἁβρὰ λέπαδνα καὶ οὐ ζυγόδεσμον ἀρότρων, αὐχένα μοῦνον Ἔρωτι καὶ οὐ Δήμητρι τιταίνει. ἀλλὰ πόθον Τυρίοιο τεοῦ γενετῆρος ἐάσας μίμνε παρ᾽ ἀλλοδαποῖσι, καὶ Αἰγυπτίης σέο Θήβης 305πατρίδος ἄστυ πόλισσον ἐπώνυμον, ἧχι πεσοῦσα εὐνήσει βαρύγουνον ἑὸν πόδα δαιμονίη βοῦς.’ ὣς φάμενος τριπόδων ἐπεκοίμισε θυιάδα φωνήν, καὶ ῥία Παρνησσοῖο τινάσσετο Φοιβάδος ἠχοῦς γείτονος εἰσαΐοντα, καὶ ὀμφήεντι ῥεέθρῳ 310Κασταλίης πάφλαζε νοήμονος ἔνθεον ὕδωρ. εἶπε θεός: καὶ Κάδμος ἐχάζετο καὶ παρὰ νηῷ βοῦν ἴδε, νισσομένῃ δὲ συνέστιχεν: ἑσπόμενοι δὲ ἀνέρες ἀπλάγκτοιο βοὸς βραδυπειθέι χηλῇ φειδομένην ἰσόμετρον ἐποιήσαντο πορείην 66

ANDREW BARRETT sanctuary. Once he arrived in Delphi, he consulted Apollo’s oracle which speaks from the center of the Earth. The autonomous voice of the Pythian axis answered, its sonorous prophecies echoing all around: “Cadmus, you travel and twist, your steps much wandering in vain. The bull you seek a cow never bore and no mortal can ascertain. “Take up as your guide, with Assyria left behind, a cow of the ground since the bull from Olympus can never be found. “Europa’s lover cannot be herded since upon grass he has never grazed, nor can he be whipped nor prodded. “Cypris’ soft strap he knows, not the plow’s yoke while bending low his neck for Eros alone and never Demeter. “For your Tyrian father be free from desire and with strangers linger. “Found a city, Thebes Egyptian in name where with heavy knees this wonder of a cow will collapse all the same.” The inspired voice of the tripod rang out and went silent. The ridges of Parnassus trembled when they heard the echoing voice of neighboring Phoebus Apollo.


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N 315ὀτρηροὶ θεράποντες: ὅθεν τότε Κάδμος ὁδεύων ἱερὸν ἔδρακε χῶρον ἐπόψιον, ἧχι νοήσας Πύθιος ἐννεάκυκλον ὀρειάδος ὁλκὸν ἀκάνθης εὔνασε Κιρραίης θανατηφόρον ἰὸν ἐχίδνης. Παρνησσοῦ δὲ κάρηνα λιπὼν μετανάστιος ἀνὴρ 320Δαυλίδος ἔστιχεν οὖδας ὁμούριον, ἔνθεν ἀκούω σιγαλέης λάλον εἷμα δυσηλακάτου Φιλομήλης, Τηρεὺς ἣν ἐμίαινεν, ὅτε ζυγίη φύγεν Ἥρη συζυγίην ἀχόρευτον ὀρεσσαύλων ὑμεναίων, κούρη δ᾽ ἀστορέεσσιν ἐπεστενάχιζε χαμεύναις 325εἰνοδίου θαλάμοιο, λιπογλώσσοιο δὲ κούρης μυρομένης Θρήισσαν ἀναγκαίην Ἀφροδίτην δάκρυσι μιμηλοῖσι λιπόθροος ἔστενεν Ἠχώ, παρθενικὴν φυγόδεμνον ὀδυρομένη Φιλομήλην, ὁππότε φοινήεντι μεμιγμένον αἵματος ὁλκῷ 330γλώσσης ἀρτιτόμοιο συνέβλυεν αἷμα κορείης: καὶ Τιτυοῦ πόλιν εἶδεν, ὅπῃ θρασὺς υἱὸς Ἀρούρης ἄλσεα καλλιπέτηλα διαστείχων Πανοπῆος ἁγνὰ βιαζομένης ἀνεσείρασε φάρεα Λητοῦς: καὶ ποδὸς ἴχνος ἔθηκε Ταναγραίῳ κενεῶνι, 335ἐκ δὲ Κορωνείης Ἁλιάρτιον οὖδας ἀμείβων Θεσπιέων τε πόληα βαθυκνήμους τε Πλαταιὰς Ἀονίης σχεδὸν ἦλθε πέδον Βοιωτὸν ὁδεύων, ἧχί ποτ᾽ Ὠρίωνα, δυσίμερον υἱέα γαίης, σκορπίος, ἀστόργοιο βοηθόος ἰοχεαίρης, 340τηλίκον ἐπρήνιξεν, ἀνυμφεύτοιο θεαίνης ἀκροτάτην ἔτι πέζαν ἀναστείλαντα χιτῶνος, ὁ βραδὺς ἑρπύζων, χθόνιον τέρας, ἀντιβίου δὲ ταρσὰ χαλαζήεντι τυχὼν ἐχαράξατο κέντρῳ. καὶ γαίης ἐπέβη Χαιρωνίδος, ἔνθα κονίην 345ἀργυφέην τέμνουσα βοὸς λευκαίνετο χηλή, καὶ κραναῆς μεθέπων πολυκαμπέα κύκλα πορείης 68

ANDREW BARRETT And the god-inspired water of sentient Castalia roiled and spilled forth in oracular rivulets. The god had spoken and Cadmus flinched. Then he noticed a cow near the temple and began to walk alongside her. His attentive men made a slow, sparse path as they followed the cow’s plodding steps. They traveled on and Cadmus saw in full view the sacred place where Pythian Apollo waited in ambush for the poisonous Delphic serpent after recognizing nine spiraling furrows from the dragon’s spine on the side of a hill. Then, after leaving the peaks of Parnassus, wandering Cadmus trekked through Daulis, where once I heard of silent, grief-stricken Philomena and her speaking tapestry. Tereus defiled her after Hera, goddess of marriage, abandoned a joyless wedding in the mountains. The girl mourned on an unadorned virginal bed after the Thracian raped her as she cried out. Silent Echo wailed with tears that reflected Philomena’s own lamentation, when the trickling blood of the shy maiden’s innocence mingled with the dark gore streaming from her newly severed tongue. He also saw the city of Tityus, where that rash son of the Earth stalked through the lovely green of Panopeus’ glens and lifted Leto’s robes, intending to over-power her. Leaving a footprint in the Tanagrian valley, Cadmus went from Coroneia to the soil of Haliartus. He passed through the city of Thespiae, Plataeae’s deep ravines and Boetion Aonia, where Scorpio helped cold Artemis by felling Earth-born Orion, love-sick in his strength. The chthonic monster stealthily crept up


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N λευκὰ κονιομένων ἀπεσείσατο λύματα ταρσῶν. καὶ βοὸς ὀμφήεσσα χαμευνάδος ὤκλασε χηλὴ ἄστεος ἐσσομένοιο προάγγελος. ἀλλ᾽ ὅτε Κάδμῳ Πύθιον οὐδαίης ἐτελείετο θέσφατον ἠχοῦς, βοῦν ἱερὴν θυόεντι διαστήσας παρὰ βωμῷ δίζετο πηγαίων ὑδάτων χύσιν, ὄφρα καθήρῃ μαντιπόλους ἕο χεῖρας, ἐπισπείσῃ δὲ θυηλαῖς ἁγνὸν ὕδωρ: οὔ πω γὰρ ἐν οἰνοφύτοισιν ἀλωαῖς 355ἁβρὸς ἀεξομένης ἀνεφαίνετο καρπὸς ὀπώρης. καὶ πόδας ἐστήριξε δρακοντοβότῳ παρὰ Δίρκῃ: στῆ δὲ ταφών, ὅθι λοξὰ φανεὶς ὀφιώδεϊ δεσμῷ Ἄρεος αἰολόνωτος ὄφις μιτρώσατο πηγήν.1.


ANDREW BARRETT and pierced Orion’s heel with a paralyzing sting as he was lifting the edge of the virgin goddess’ gown. He passed through the land of Chaironeia, where the cow’s hoof gleamed in the Sun as she cut through silver sands. Then the cow followed a winding rocky path and shook off the white sand from her dusty heels. Finally, her prophetic hoof buckled and she collapsed, announcing a future city. When this divine prophecy from the Earth was fulfilled, Cadmus removed the divine cow to an altar smoldering with incense and searched for a trickling stream so he could cleanse his trembling hands and sprinkle pure water over the offering instead of wine – tender grapes ripening in the autumn light of dense vineyards had yet to grow upon the earth. Then he stopped at dragon-breeding Dirce and was transfixed in awe – the shimmering back of Ares’ serpent appeared slant-wise, coiling around the flowing spring like a twisted chain.


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N

I Am the Ghost of a King By Fernando Pessoa Translated by Juan-Diego Mariategui

from Portuguese

Sou o fantasma de um rei Sou o fantasma de um rei Que sem cessar percorre As salas de um palácio abandonado... Minha história não sei... Longe em mim, fumo de eu pensá-la, morre A ideia de que tive algum passado... Eu não sei o que sou. Não sei se sou o sonho Que alguém do outro mundo esteja tendo... Creio talvez que estou Sendo um perfil casual de rei tristonho Numa história que um deus está relendo...



I am the ghost of a king I am the ghost of a king That without cease roams The rooms of an abandoned palace… My own history I do not know… Far within me, smoke of my thoughts, dies The idea that I once had a past… I do not know who I am. I do not know if I am a dream That someone in another realm is having… I think perhaps I am Being a casual profile of a saddened king In some story a god is rereading…


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N

The Scream By Edvard Munch Translated by Andrea Wister

from Norwegian Jeg gik bortover veien med to venner så gik solen ned Himmelen ble pludseli blodi rø – Jeg standset, lænet mig til gjæret træt til døden– over den blåsorte fjor og by lå blod i ildtunger Mine venner gik videre og jeg sto igjen skjælvende af angest – og jeg følte det gik et stort uenneligt skrig gennem naturen



I walked down the road with two friends Then the sun set. Suddenly the sky turned red like blood I stopped, leaned against the railing, so close to death Across the blue-black fjord and town lay blood in tongues of fire My friends continued walking, and I was left standing, shaking with fright and I felt a vast everlasting scream pass through nature


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N Morphine By Luis Chacón Ortiz Translated by Cathy Nelson & Vanessa Martínez

from Spanish pero es que esta hijueputa se cree argentina / argentina y encima como arrastrada de una cinta de almodóvar dice la mariana subida hasta neptuno los ojos chinos la mariana en top y unos calzones rosas que la hacen ver de la cagada un pucho metido en los labios la muy-muy acabamos de coger rico me siento relax con marihuana cualquier polvo es riquísimo y ahora estamos en mi depa vinimos acá después de un par de cervezas en caccio’s a la mariana le gusta el lugar a mi me parece una reverenda panochada una pseudocueva bohemia-cultural para los juega-de-intelectuales de este país esos que leen a neruda y escuchan a sabina como si estuviéramos en mil novecientos ochenta de cinta gore pero a mariana le gusta el lugar en fin tomamos un par de frías chingamos fumamos derby suave y ahora aquí en mi depa un pucho fuerte primero algo de coca y speed y una cogida por delante y por atrás está rica la mariana tan volada que hace un rato se le ocurrió que podía volar de verdad que se iba a lanzar del balcón la muy estúpida ahora pongo un poco de música en el estéreo y yo que le puedo ver la raja a la mariana a través de los calzones un poco de música para hacer ambiente y nine inch nails y the fragile bueno el disco ese y me siento de nuevo a la par de la mariana y le agarro las tetas y se las acaricio y ella que se ríe yo le


C A T H Y N E L S O N & VA N E S S A M A R T I N E Z

but it’s just that this bitch thinks she’s argentinian / argentinian like straight out of an almodóvar film mariana says high as neptune those china girl eyes mariana in a little top and pink panties that make her look slutty a roach stuck between her lips the very-very we just finished fucking good me siento relax with marijuana any hit feels amazing and now we’re at my apartment we came here after a couple beers at caccio’s mariana likes the place i think it seems like a righteous pussy a pseudo-cave bohemian-culture for the country’s intellectual pretenders who read neruda and listen to sabina as if we were in 1980 from a gore film but mariana likes the place and we drink a couple cold ones we bullshit awhile we smoke derby smooth and now here at my apartment a nice roach first some coke and speed and a fuck face-to-face and from behind she’s hot mariana so high that awhile ago she got the idea that she could fly for real that she was going to jump from the balcony dumbass now i put a little music on the stereo and i can see mariana’s crack through her panties a little music to create the mood and nine inch nails and the fragile this album’s so good and i sit next to mariana again and grab her tits and caress them and she laughs and i ask who thinks she’s argentinian and mariana looks at me as if through a telescope this is ground control calling major tom


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N

pregunto quién es la que se cree argentina y la mariana me mira como desde un telescopio this is ground control calling mayor tom y de pronto como que le cae y dice la mamona esa que sale en tele en canal siete todos los viernes ese programita de entrevistas que me cae en los huevos y yo en los ovarios y la mariana sí que de todas formas esos parecen más unos huevos y las dos que nos reímos así re voladas esa tipa es cubana se llama cristina y la mariana de verdad que sí que de verdad igual parece que brotó instantánea de una cinta de almódovar la muy zorra a esa que sale en todo sobre mi madre y yo mariana estás bien loca y bien fumada y la mariana sí y de pronto que ella se levanta de un tirón y se tambalea como si se fuera a caer pero no me tiende los brazos y me levanta con fuerza me abraza y me arrima el panocho a los muslos y yo que la siento bien calientita a ella y a su animalito y nos ponemos a bailar cuando suena into the void a buen volumen en el equipo y la mariana que lo deje así y yo que no que nos van a joder los vecinos que van a llamar a la poli y ella que me clava la lengua en mi garganta y se ríe y me toca mi panocha y todo se siente bien así riquísimo y yo que me olvido de los vecinos y entonces que la mariana saca un cigarrillo y un encendedor y prende el cigarro lo cala lo cala lo cala hasta que pone roja la puntita bien que te gustan las puntitas rojas mariana y ella que aspira-aspira y luego arroja el humo a la habitación


C A T H Y N E L S O N & VA N E S S A M A R T I N E Z

and suddenly like she gets it she says that broad on tv on channel seven every friday that stupid interview show is such a pain in the balls and i say in the ovaries and mariana’s all yeah anyway those seem more like balls and we both laugh so high that chick’s cuban her name’s cristina mariana’s like really yeah for real it still seems like she suddenly popped out of an almodóvar film that fucking whore who’s in all about my mother and I’m like mariana you’re so crazy and so high and mariana’s all yeah and suddenly she jumps up and teeters as if she’s about to fall but she doesn’t she grabs my arms and she pulls me up hard she hugs me and pulls her pussy toward my thighs and because i can feel her and her little pussy are nice and hot we begin to dance when we hear into the void playing loud through the speaker and mariana’s all leave it there and i’m like no the neighbors are gonna screw us over they’ll call the cops and she drives her tongue down my throat and laughs and touches my pussy and everything feels good so amazing and i forget about the neighbors and then mariana takes out a cigarette and a lighter and lights the cigarette and takes a drag a drag a drag until the little tip turns red good thing you like little red tips mariana and she inhales-inhales and then blows the smoke out into the room the smoke hanging on the walls mariana smiles like an idiot and keeps dancing absently and grabs me rubs her body


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N

el humo colgando en las paredes la mariana que sonríe como boba y sigue bailando ausente y me agarra restriega su cuerpo contra el mío y siento su lengua en mi cuello en mi oído en mi lengua en mis pezones en mi abdomen recorre mi brazo hasta dejarlo húmedo-mojado y yo aquí cuando veo a la mariana acercando el cigarrillo a la piel de mi brazo y yo talking to myself all the way to the station qué hacés estúpida le grito quito el brazo rápido y la mariana que sólo se ríe la hijueputa y dice se siente rico es un experimento ya verás experimento la puta madre que te parió y la mariana no te pongás así que es rico que por algo a la gente le gusta el sado duele pero es rico como la bitter moon de polanski o la four rooms de tarantino y Foucault y así y otros no has visto bitter moon y ella que me acerca la punta del cigarro de nuevo al brazo y yo que de un pichazo duro en la mano lo tiro al piso y ella que me golpea en el pecho IDIOTA me mira como si le hubiera tirado al piso una línea de coca y entonces que se agacha a recoger el cigarrillo pero ya se ha apagado y la mariana saca otro y lo enciende y se empieza a lamer el brazo como si fuera una gata de arriba abajo con la lengua hasta dejarlo empapado y mirá puta mirá se pone la punta del cigarrillo sobre la piel y yo que le veo la cara a la mariana hacer algo así como una mezcla entre el dolor-feo y el placer sí placer la muy estúpida lo está gozando de verdad ya mariana no seas re bruta y ella que retira el cigarro del brazo completamente apagado y me mira los ojos rojos un poco de lágrimas y de pronto que se caga de risa viste te apuesto a que esa hijuputa cubargentina no haría eso


C A T H Y N E L S O N & VA N E S S A M A R T I N E Z

against mine and i feel her tongue on my neck in my ear on my tongue on my nipples on my stomach tracing my arm until she leaves it moist—wet and it’s here when i see mariana bringing the cigarette closer to the skin of my arm and i’m like talking to myself all the way to the station what are you doing you shit i yell i take back my arm quickly and mariana only laughs the bitch and says it feels good it’s an experiment you’ll see motherfucking experiment my ass and mariana’s all don’t be like that it’s nice for some reason people like sadomasochism it hurts but it’s nice like polanski’s bitter moon or tarantino’s four rooms and foucault and like that and others you haven’t seen bitter moon and she brings the tip of the cigarette back to my arm i smack her hard on the hand i throw it to the floor and she hits me in the chest IDIOT she looks at me as if i had thrown a line of coke on the floor and then crouches down to pick up the cigarette but it’s already out and mariana takes out another and lights it and begins to lick her arm as if she were a cat from top to bottom with her tongue until it’s all wet look bitch look she puts the tip of the cigarette on her skin and i see mariana’s face look something like a mix between ugly-pain and pleasure yes pleasure that dumbass is really enjoying it enough mariana don’t be so sick and she takes the cigarette from her arm completely burnt out and looks at me her eyes red and a little teary and suddenly piss laughing see i bet you that fucking cuban-argentinian bitch wouldn’t do that and just like that mariana’s dying laughing and i’m all


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N y así la mariana muerta de risa y yo sos una buena frik para su show y que me ataco de risa yo también porque hay que estar muy loco muy fumado para hacer algo así y yo se lo digo mariana estás de la picha le digo y ella que sí sí sí y también ahora vos dice y yo no no mariana no pero la verdad es que ya tengo curiosidad y ella que me agarra el brazo y me lo lame-lame uy mariana que rico que me lamés y luego prende otro cigarrillo y cala-cala hasta que sale humo y yo que tengo miedo mariana que mejor no no estoy segura y ella sí que no seas pendeja entonces es el ardor que siento en el brazo la quema de la punta del cigarro sobre la piel y duele la puta pero la verdad es que también hay algo rico y siento que no puedo respirar y ya mariana ya mariana ya pará pará que no puedo y ella se ríe y quita el cigarro que ya se ha apagado y cuando abro los ojos ella me está viendo la muy puta y yo con los ojos llenos de lágrimas te gustó te gustó se te ve en la mirada y yo que me cago de risa por que sí hay algo rico en todo esto y entonces la mariana más más y yo me inclino para coger otro cigarrillo y ella que me detiene la mano no no eso no dice más más y veo que se va a la cocina la subida y yo me quedó ahí y me veo el brazo ha brotado una pequeña pelotita en el lugar donde mariana puso el cigarrillo mierda eso va a dejar una marca entonces escucho a la mariana venir de regreso hacia mi trae un puto cuchillo de la cocina y a mí que de pronto me agarra muchísimo miedo de pensar que puede hacer esta estúpida qué vas a hacer hijueputa la voz no me sale reznor tried to save myself but myself keeps slipping away


C A T H Y N E L S O N & VA N E S S A M A R T I N E Z

you’re a good freak for her show and i can’t help laughing too because you’d have to be real fucked up crazy to do something like this and i say mariana you’re fucking wasted i tell her and she’s all yes yes yes and now you too she says and i’m like no no mariana no but the truth is that now i’m curious and she grabs my arm and licks it-licks it ahh mariana i love the way you lick me and then she lights another cigarette and inhales-inhales until there’s smoke and i’m scared mariana we shouldn’t i’m not sure and she’s all c’mon don’t be a pussy then it’s the heat that i feel on my arm the burn from the tip of the cigarette on my skin and fuck it hurts but the truth is there’s something nice and i feel like i can’t breathe and enough mariana enough mariana enough stop stop i can’t and she laughs and takes the cigarette away already burnt out and when i open my eyes she’s watching me that fucking bitch me with my eyes full of tears you liked it you liked it i see it in your face and i’m piss laughing because there’s something nice in all this and then mariana’s like more more and i lean for another cigarette and she grabs my hand no no not that she says more more and i watch her go to the kitchen all high and i stay there and i look at my arm a little blister’s where mariana put the cigarette shit that’s going to leave a mark then i hear mariana coming back toward me she’s carrying a fucking knife from the kitchen and suddenly fear thinking of the things this dumbass could do what are you going to do you crazy bitch i can’t speak reznor tried to save myself but myself keeps slipping away good and loud


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N a buen volumen tried to save a place from the cuts and the scratches la mariana viene a mí con un gran puto cuchillo hace tiempo que leía que en ocasiones un buen cocktail funciona como morfina para que no sintás nada dice ella quévasahacerhijadelagranputaquévasahacer la mariana que pone una mano sobre la mesa de la sala y abre así bien los dedos y yo cierro los ojos porque no quiero ver mirá puta zorra miráme grita tried to overcome the complications and the catches si me corto un dedo ahora mismo vos creés que sienta algo después de todo lo que tomamos mariana estás muy volada mejor dejá el cuchillo a un lado que no seas pen-de-ja cabrona te dije he escuchado que un buen cocktail es igual a la morfina vos creés que sienta algo qué putas sé yo no soy médica vos estás loca lo vi en una peli una vez y levanta el cuchillo bien alto y yo cierro otra vez los ojos con fuerza con fuerza y luego no escucho nada y pienso ya se cortó la puta nada y entonces abro los ojos así despacito para ver si es cierto y veo a la mariana aún con el cuchillo bien arriba y la mirándome la muy me mira a los ojos como perdida como desde otra galaxia y de pronto que dice no yo no puedo mejor mariana ya parála y me acerco a ella para quitarle el cuchillo y ella se deja fácil y yo ya tengo el cuchillo no pasa nada y entonces la mariana que me agarra el brazo y me presiona la pelotita con fuerza y me DUELE y ella no me suelta nothing ever grows and the sun doesn’t shine all day hacélo vos pero lo dice bien bajito no mariana ni mierda yo no me hago esas cosas por placer y mariana que aprieta aún más mi brazo HURTS TRIED TO SAVE MYSELF but HURTS


C A T H Y N E L S O N & VA N E S S A M A R T I N E Z tried to save a place from the cuts and the scratches mariana comes at me with a huge fucking knife i read that a good drink works like morphine so you don’t feel anything she says no mariana i’m not fucking kidding i don’t do those things to myself for fun and mariana presses my arm harder HURTS TRIED TO SAVE MYSELF but HURTS NO YOU FUCKING DUMBASS I’M NOT GOING TO LET YOU GO CRAZY BITCH she puts her hand on the table again and again opens her fingers wide wide and she’s like get the little one that one isn’t good for shit anyway you didn’t have enouwhatareyougoingtodoyouguckingcrazyass bitchwhatare-yougoingtodo mariana puts one hand on the living room table and opens her fingers wide and i shut my eyes because i don’t want to see look you fucking slut look at me she screams tried to overcome the complications and the catches if i cut my finger right now do you think i’ll feel anything after all that we took mariana you’re really high you better put down the knife don’t be an ass you lit-tle fuck-ing bitch i told you a drink is the same as morphine you think i’ll even feel anything what the fuck do i know i’m not a doctor you’re crazy i saw it in a movie once and she lifts the knife real high and i close my eyes again tight tight and then i don’t hear anything and i think she cut herself that crazy bitch nothing and so i open my eyes like this slowly to see if it’s true and i see mariana still with the knife real high and she’s looking at me the fucking bitch looks me in the eye as if lost as if from another galaxy and suddenly she says no i can’t good mariana enough stop it and i move closer to her to take the knife from her and she lets


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N

NO A VOS RE ESTÚPIDA NO TE VOY A SOLTAR HIJUPUTA ella que pone de nuevo la mano sobre la mesa y abre los dedos bien bien de nuevo y ella dale el pequeñito de todas formas ese no sirve para una mierda no tuviste suficiente con el cigarro y la mariana se ríe por eso imbécil porque me gustó mucho quiero saber ella aprieta-aprieta y yo cierro los ojos y es como sumergirse en un sueño veo nebulosas pictures in my head of the final destination las estrellas I tried to save myself but myself keeps slipping away el vacío y me siento flotar me asfixio no tengo aire por que en el espacio no hay aire por que en el espacio nadie puede escuchar tus gritos yo no escucho nada y ya no soporto más y lanzo el brazo con fuerza hacia la mesa I tried to SAVE myself BUT myself KeePs SlipPing AwAy y escucho el ruido del metal incrustarse en el espacio y de pronto sé que algo está mal que algo salió muy mal que en el espacio sí pueden escuchar tus gritos que la que grita es mariana.


C A T H Y N E L S O N & VA N E S S A M A R T I N E Z

it go easily and now i have the knife nothing happens and then mariana grabs my arm and presses the little blister hard and it HURTS and she won’t let me go nothing ever grows and the sun doesn’t shine all day you do it but she says it very softly gh with the cigarette and mariana laughs that’s why dumbass because i liked it a lot i want to know she presses-presses the knife and i close my eyes and it’s like being underwater in a dream and i see cloudy pictures in my head of the final destination the stars I tried to save myself but myself keeps slipping away the emptiness and i feel like i’m floating i suffocate i don’t have air because in space there’s no air because in space no one can hear your screams i don’t hear anything and i can’t take it any longer and my arm swings hard toward the table I tried to SAVE myself BUT myself KeePs SlipPing AwAy and i hear the sound of metal burying itself in space and suddenly i know something is wrong that something has gone very wrong that in space they can hear your screams that the one who is screaming is mariana.


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N



A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N

After A Dream Lyrics by Romain Bussine Music by Gabriel Fauré Translated by Alison Silver

from French

Dans un sommeil que charmait ton image Je rêvais le bonheur, ardent mirage, Tes yeux étaient plus doux, ta voix pure et sonore, Tu rayonnais comme un ciel éclairé par l’aurore; Tu m’appelais et je quittais la terre Pour m’enfuir avec toi vers la lumière, Les cieux pour nous entr’ouvraient leurs nues, Splendeurs inconnues, lueurs divines entrevues, Hélas! Hélas! triste réveil des songes Je t’appelle, ô nuit, rends moi tes mensonges, Reviens, reviens radieuse, Reviens ô nuit mystérieuse!



In a sleep charmed by your reflection I dreamed a burning mirage of perfection, Your eyes were sweeter, your voice pure and wise, You sparkled like a sky lit up by sunrise; You called me and I from the earth took flight To escape with you toward the light, For us the skies opened their contents bare, Grandeurs unknown, glimmers of hope in the air, Alas! Alas! From dreams sadly to arise I call you, oh night, return me to your lies, Come back, come back radiant sight, Come back to me oh mysterious night!


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N



A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N Excerpts from Summer 90 By Marguerite Duras Translated by Emma Ramadan

from French Duras, Marguerite. L’Été 80. Paris: Les Éditions de Minuit, 1980. Le livre n’est pas terminé. La fin n’a pas été écrite, elle n’a jamais été trouvée. Elle n’aurait jamais été trouvée. La fin mortelle du livre n’existait pas, n’existe pas. Le supplice est sans fin. La fin est à toutes pages du livre. L’auteur est mort. Le livre est là tout à coup, dans un isolement effrayant, éternité dans la brutalité de son arrêt. Puis il se referme. Sur le chemin de planches, longue et sombre, si mince qu’on dirait une ombre, passe la jeune monitrice de la plage. Elle est avec l’enfant. Il marche un peu à côté d’elle, ils vont lentement, elle lui parle, elle lui dit qu’elle l’aime, qu’elle aime un enfant. Elle lui dit d’écouter ce qu’elle dit comme un histoire qui ne s’adresserait pas à lui, ou bien de l’écouter, comme il veut, elle lui dit son âge, dix-huit ans, et son nom. Il répète son nom. Il est mince, maigre, ils ont eux aussi le même corps, la même démarche un peu lasse, longue. Sous le réverbère elle s’est arrêtée, elle a pris son visage dans sa main et elle l’a levé vers la lumière, pour voir ses yeux dit-elle, les yeux incommensurablement gris. Elle lâche le visage, elle lui parle encore, elle lui dit qu’il se souviendra toute sa vie de cette soirée d’été et d’elle. Elle lui dit que lorsqu’il aura dix-huit ans, s’il se souvient de la date et de l’heure du 30 juillet minuit, il pourra venir, qu’elle y sera.



The book isn’t finished. The end hasn’t been written, it has never been found. It would never have been found. The mortal end of the book didn’t exist, doesn’t exist. The torture is without end. The end is on every page of the book. The author is dead. Suddenly the book is there, in a frightening isolation, eternity in the brutality of its end. Then it withdraws into itself. On the boardwalk, long and somber, so slender that they thought her a shadow, passes the young beach instructor. She is with the child. He walks sort of at her side, they go slowly, she talks to him, she tells him she loves him, she loves a child. She tells him to listen to what she says like a story that would not concern him, or to listen to her, as he likes, she tells him her age, eighteen, and her name. He repeats her name. He is thin, skinny, they also have the same body, the same gait, a little tired, long. Under the lamppost she stopped, she took his face in her hand and she lifted it towards the light, to look at his eyes she says, eyes immensely grey. She lets go of his face, she talks to him again, she tells him that for the rest of his life he will remember this summer night, and her. She tells him that when he’s eighteen, if he remembers the date and the hour, July 30th at midnight, he may come, and she will be there. (36-37)


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N La jeune fille a atteint la remontée des pierres vers les marécages de la baie. Là, la mer n’allait jamais, elle a dit à l’enfant qu’il ne fallait plus avoir peur. Elle a posé l’enfant et ils ont marché dans le chemin entre les champs de joncs. C’est alors, au bout d’un moment, que la jeune fille a dit qu’elle préférait qu’il en soit ainsi entre elle et lui, elle a dit que ce soit tout à fait impossible, elle a dit : que ce soit tout à fait désespéré. Elle a dit que s’il avait été grand leur histoire les aurait quittés, qu’elle ne pouvait même pas imaginer une telle chose et qu’elle préférait que cette histoire en reste là où elle en était, pour toujours, dans cette douleur-là, dans ce désir-là, dans le tourment invivable de ce désir-là, même si cela pouvait porter à se donner la mort. Elle a dit qu’elle souhaitait aussi que rien d’autre n’arrive entre eux lorsqu’ils se reverraient dans douze ans ici près de la mer, rien d’autre que cette douleur-là, encore, de maintenant, si terrible qu’elle soit, si terrible qu’elle serait, car elle le serait, et qu’il faudrait qu’ils la vivent ainsi, écrasante, terrifiante, définitive. Elle a dit qu’elle souhaitait qu’il en soit ainsi jusqu’à leur mort.

Non, la jeune fille n’a plus regardé l’enfant, comme s’il n’existait pas, comme s’il n’avait jamais existé, comme s’il était puni d’être aimable au point d’en être maudit, comme s’il n’avait jamais existé, oui, c’est ça, jamais, jamais, comme si l’idée même de son existence ne l’avait jamais effleurée, comme si tu n’existais pas. L’enfant a retiré sa main, il s’est arrêté, il ne comprenait pas qui elle était, qui elle était devenue. Et puis il a recommencé à la suivre. L’été est devenu gris, le soleil est passé.



The young girl reached the highest point of the rocks near the marshes of the bay. There, the sea never comes, she told the child he didn’t need to be afraid anymore. She put down the child and they walked down the path between the fields of reeds. It was then, after a moment, that the young girl said she preferred for it to be like this between him and her, she said that it would be absolutely impossible, she said: that it would be completely hopeless. She said that if he had been older their story would have escaped them, that she could not even imagine such a thing and that she preferred this story remain just as it was, forever, in this sadness, in this desire, in the unbearable torment of this desire, even if it might bring about her death. She said she also wished that nothing else would happen between them until they saw each other again in twelve years here by the sea, nothing else but this sadness, only, of this moment, as terrible as it was, as terrible as it will be, because it will be, and they must live it thus, crushing, terrifying, final. She said she hoped it would be like this until their death. (85)

No, the young girl didn’t look at the child anymore, as if he didn’t exist, as if he had never existed, as if punished for being kind to the point of being wretched, as if he had never existed, yes, that’s it, never, never, as if even the idea of his existence never occurred, as if you didn’t exist. The child withdrew his hand, he stopped, he didn’t understand who she was, who she had become. And then he started to follow her again. The summer turned grey, the sun was gone. (97)


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N

Extract of Die Verschleppung By Josef Winkler Translated by Adrian West

from German

Die Verschleppung (The Abduction) recounts the life story of a Ukrainian woman as narrated to the novelist in the course of a year in which he had taken up lodging with her family in order to complete a novel manuscript in the quiet of the Carinthian mountains. Over the course of the book, the protagonist recounts the indignities suffered by her family at the hands of the Soviets, the enforced famine in the Ukraine, and her kidnapping by Nazi invaders, after which she was shipped off to Austria as a forced laborer and never saw her mother or her homeland again.

Njetotschka Iljashenko Recollects her Ukrainian Childhood Njetotschka Wassiljewna Iljashenko put on her nightgown and got ready for bed. In the kitchen of the farmhouse, told her I had seen a picture in the Lord’s corner in her be room that I would like to take a closer look at, but that I didn’t want to go snooping around in her bedroom. We mounted the staircase, and I walked straight to the holy cor ner. Her bedroom is somber, lit up only by a weak bulb. A few steps from her bed stand a crib, inside it a doll is sitting upright in a silk dress. Because the light was bad, I drew near to the picture to examine it more closely. I asked Njetotschka Wassiljewna whether I could take it down from the wall. Of course you can, she said. I lifted it off the nail, looked at it briefly, turned it over; she noticed the cobwebs and said she should clean it off first. She went down to the washroom, fetched a washcloth and wiped the cobwebs away. You can 98

ADRIAN WEST take a fresh washcloth for yourself from the cupboard, she sad, and recalled that this picture had once hung over her children’s cribs. I wanted to ask her in which room and in which bed her children had slept at that time, whether any remnants of these cribs survived, but I did not detain her any longer. She said goodnight and closed her bedroom door. I went to my room with this picture that I had taken down from the wall in the holy corner of her bedroom, and lay the picture on the table, next to my typewriter. The gold of the frame is scuffed and crumbles off in places; though it is a sacred image, it has not been spared by wood worms. It shows a barefoot girl with a wooden basket over her left arm and a bundle of flowers in her right hand. The child walks over a bridge spanning a rushing stream. Over the girl hovers an angel with outspread wings, outspread sheltering hands, blond hair, a blue silk robe and a white veil wrapped half around its breast and half around its left hand. I say: a rushing stream, because I hear the stream rush when I look at the picture, but it is likely I am speaking of a rushing stream because there is one not far from my east window. On the night of April 7, 1943, towards eleven o’ clock, the fourteen year-old Njetotschka Wassiljewna, who had been deported from Russia in a cattle car, was brought to this eastward-facing bedroom, after first being given her dinner. The room be longed to a maidservant afflicted with goiter. At first Nje totschka Wassiljewnat thought this woman, with her huge goiter and disheveled hair, was a witch, a widma as they were called in Russian. Njetotschka Wassiljewna feared she would be roasted alive. She recollected the tale of Hansel and Gretel told to her long before in her Russian hometown of Dobenka by her sister Lydia Wassiljewna Iljashenko, who had also been abducted in the same cattle car and brought to Carinthia as a forced laborer. 99

A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N In the kitchen, a black dog called Waltl crouched next to the little Njetotschka Wassiljewna. If she stirred, the dog would begin to growl. She stared anxiously at the woman with the goiter who stood warming up the stove. Over and over the thought went through her head that the witch was going to roast her alive. Njetotschka Wassiljewna had spent nearly four weeks traveling in the cattle car, from Kiev through Czecho slovakia, Poland, and Austria, before finally arriving in Villach. She listened to the witch’s fearsome wheezing. Njetotschka Wassiljewna thought back to something her mother, Hapka Dawidowna Iljashenko, had told her, that in the thirties, during the famine in Russia, many parents had devoured their own children to still their hunger. A child’s head had been discovered in a barn in her hometown. Nje totschka Wassiljewna thought of the dead child’s hunchbacked sister, who at that time, when her parents were already dead of starvation—the heads of the Kolkhoz, Holowa Kolhospu and Holowa Silradi, those murderous soviet puppets, had taken away their land and all their possessions—rummaged around in the barn near her parents’ house in Dobenka, looking for something edible. Njetotschka Wassiljewna sensed she was being watched by the black dog crouching at her feet, so she would not escape from the witch who was warming the stove up to roast her alive. For the more than three weeks she spent on her journey in the cattle car, interrupted a few times so the deportees could be looked over and deloused, she had been unable to stretch out her arms and legs. We were packed in like cattle, she said to me, I knelt against the wall, pulled my legs into myself, rested my head on my knees, that’s how I was made to sleep. Not until Vienna was she given a proper coffee and a piece of edible bread, the rest of the time she had to eat the sawdust bread, as she described it. At the train sta tion in Villach, she said, we were offloaded from the cattle car 100

ADRIAN WEST and driven like a herd of animals through the city to the labor office. With her sister Lydis Wassiljewna, accompanied by the farmers who had come to the Villach labor office to pick through the Russians and Poles and cart them away, she walked over the goat’s back toward Fresach and from there further up into the mountain village of Mooswald. The farmers looked us over and sorted through us as if we were farm animals at the market. The Ukraine, she said to me, is hilly but not mountainous, and the first time I saw a mountain and had to go up it, I thought to myself, how on earth can a person live atop a mountain. Lydia Wassiljewna was taken by Kofler from Amberg, while Njetotschka Wassiljewna was taken by Nied erstarzer from Mooswald. Njetotschka, who spoke not a single word of German, grabbed onto her sister’s hand, thus convey ing to the farmers that she would not be separated from her sister, with whom she had been abducted from Russia and brought to Carinthia. There was a man there, however, her eventual brother-in-law, who had been at the Russian front and spoke a bit of Russian and who conveyed to her that she could visit her sister every Sunday and that she would live a mere half-hour’s walk from her sister. When she first heard the Carinthian dialect spoken, at the labor office in Villach, where the deported were lined up before the farmers, she thought, that can’t be a real language, that’s a complete babble. Never in my life will I learn that. The witch, who was warming up the oven while the young Russian sat anxiously beside the black dog, made her a tea and a piece of buttered toast. I calmed down a bit, she said to me, when I saw I would get something to eat and wasn’t going to be roasted alive. When the Russian was done eating, the witch took her hand and once again Njetotschka Wassiljewna had no idea what was about to happen to her. The witch led Nje totschka Wassiljewna to a room with two beds and pointed at 101

A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N an empty bed. Njetotschka Wassiljewna, exhausted and ill after a nearly four-week-long journey in a cattle car, slept in a bed again for the first time since she was awakened at two in the morning in her parents’ house in Dobenka by a policeman jabbing his pistol into her ribs. Njetotschka Wassiljewna slept deep and didn’t awake until the next morn ing, when it was already light out. She stood up and looked out the window. Outside there lay new snow on the ground. 38 years later, I laid the picture of the guardian angel that she had taken down from her bedroom wall on my writing desk, next to the typewriter, in the same room where Njetotschka Wassiljewna had spent her first night. The angel was guard ing over the child, accompanying it across the bridge, it must have been a prayerful child, a god-fearing one who recited the guardian angel each night before bed, as I once had, my hands folded, while my mother sat on the edge of the bed and helped me along when I stumbled. Angel of God, my guardian dear, to whom God’s love commits me here, ever this day, be at my side, to light and guard, to rule and guide. While I said my prayer, I saw the in the picture before me how an angel led a child over a bridge, but in my childish imagination the angels didn’t only protect me; now and then a black angel would show up who meant me no good, who flapped his black wings and blew gales into my young soul and suffocated me. I met the fallen angel who became Lucifer. There were mongoloid angels, handicapped angels, the purple angel that went about on crutches, his foot must have been been shot off during a war between the angels above the clouds that floated over the farmhouses in my native village; the eyeless angels came, identified by yellow bands wrapped around their monastically upright necks, keeping vigil for the margarita-strewn child lying stretched out on the bed. 102

ADRIAN WEST In the spring of 1981 I was working on a novel manuscript in Vienna and, exhausted from my work on the novel and from city life, I went with a friend to the farming village in the mountains Carinthia where his parents owned an old renovat ed farmhouse. We stayed in this house more than fourteen days, and in the interim I had resolved to leave Vienna. I couldn’t bear it any more, walking in the Volksgarten and hav ing to watch as the police stood in front of the young men lying in the park and took down their names. In a flash I imagined myself charging the policeman and tearing his baton from his satchel. In Rome, in the park of the Villa Borghese, thousands of young men lie under the tree blossoms in springtime, ragazzi playing football run across the lawn, the girls smear their lipstick on the countless stone busts situated throughout the park of the Villa Borghese, and I don’t see a single policeman crouching behind a statue and leaping out suddenly, tugging at his baton or his ticket book. Busses drive through this huge park, sectioned off by streets, to the left and right the ragazzi lean out the windows of the passing autobuses, shouting, holding up banners, and banging rhythmically against the body of the autobus with the flat of their hands; then you know, without having to hear it on the radio, that AC Roma has won again. I had therefore resolved to abandon Vienna, a city in which I had held out no more than five months, to go up into the mountains, to live in a farmhouse with a family in the mountains, to live atop a mountain looking down on the valley of my youth. It was near the end of May when I walked from farmhouse to farmhouse in Mooswald and asked for accommodations whenever I saw a to-let sign at the door of a house, but the proprietors told me that the rooms were all already reserved, that they had all been booked up by German vacationers. I told the proprietors I would be staying for sev 103

A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N eral months, that I had to work on a manuscript, but this was no help in my attempts to convince them to turn down the Germans and take me on instead. Without the least hope of finding quarters, I made my way back to the vacation house. On the way I saw a blond farm boy on a tractor bringing the hay into the barn. I passed sev eral times by his parents’ farm, saw no to-let sign, and as I had seen their numerous sons at the front door, I could not imag ine that they had a free room. I walked up to the tractor driver. He stepped on the brakes. I said to him that I had a written work to finish, that I was hoping to stay for vari ous months with a farm family here on the mountain, to continue working in tranquility, and asked him if perhaps he didn’t know of a farmhouse where I might be put up. Amid the noise of the tractor he called to me, ask my mum! At the same time he pointed to the barn door, whence his mum was emerging. I gave the woman my hand and explained my proposal. We discussed the rates for full room and board and agreed that I would return that evening or the next day and look over the room. The next morning we came, my friend and I, back to the farmhouse, but I hadn’t the courage to step into the foyer, we remained seated on the edge of the planter in front of the farmhouse. For years I hadn’t set foot inside a farmhouse, for years I hadn’t been in a stable, and yet in recent years I had been constantly at my writing table deal ing with my roots in the farm and the village. The woman walked out of the stable and went through a side door, which led through an anteroom with a stove, and into the kitchen, while we sat on the planter near the front door. I remained seated a while, staring into the spruce forest and down into the valley, in the expectation that she would finally invite us in. I rested one leg over the other and clasped one hand in the other. I heard the cry of the rooster from the neighboring 104

ADRIAN WEST farm, the barking of two dogs, the beasts in the stable rat tling their chains, many were lowing, and far out over the chimneys of the farmhouses passed a flock of ravens. I saw the uncounted diminutive black feet that passed by high over our heads. I stared at the fenced-in vegetable garden without the least notion that eight months later, I would be kneeling down before Njetotschka Wassiljewna holding a tape recorder and, while she weeded her garden, taking down the story of her Russian childhood and her abduction. When she had weeded the entire garden, the tape was finished. I hadn’t the least notion at that time that I would stay not only a few months, in order to prepare a novel manuscript, that I would remain more than a year in the room of her farmhouse in which she had once, on 7 April 1943, awake again after her long ordeal in the cattle car, gone to the window and seen the new snow lying on the ground. She couldn’t believe that in Carinthia the snow still fell in April. Back in Russia, she said to me, the plough work was done in March, in March the fields were already tilled. We waited uselessly. Apparently, she was waiting for us, just as we were waiting for her. Finally we stood up, I knocked on the kitchen door and opened it. I walked up to the woman, gave her my hand, turned away from her in embarrassment and sat down on the bench near the sofa. In the corner, under the holy corner, stands a radio, and on top of it, a small vase of dried strawflowers. When the radio has been on a long time, I thought, it must heat up the vase and the strawflowers. In the opposite corner stands the television set. A vase of flowers stands likewise over the television set, but with live flow ers and no strawflowers, next to it stands the color bust por trait of a young man. Gingerbread hearts, the kind sold under the market tent at the country fair, hang over the television, affixed to an old wooden tray, medals from ski championships 105

A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N hang from the tray, and atop it stand several trophies. The world skiing champion and Olympic gold medalist Franz Klammer is one of her neighbors. Over the west window, on a nail, hang various obituaries. On the north wall of the kitchen, in a broad frame, is a color aerial photo showing an estate. I stood up, stepped closer to the photo, the woman came closer as well and said, that is the Starzers’! It is her fam ily’s estate, in other words. Between the barn, the stables and the residence there stands an old linden towering over the house and the stables. Furthermore, how could I have imagined that we, Njetotschka Wassiljewna, her young est son and I would sing together, eight months later, a song from Franz Schubert, in the stable and under the linden: Am Brunnen vor dem Tore, da steht ein Linden baum, ich träumt in seinem Schatten, so manchen süßen Traum. Ich schnitt in seine Rinde, so manches süße Wort… In the well, a deep, round shaft near the linden beyond the stable door, her family had preserved a slaughtered lamb bound at the feet throughout the heat of summer, until there was nothing left of it. When the linden blossomed, we went up into its branches with the hatchet over our shoulders. Old farmwives came with baskets and Njetotschka Wassiljewna Iljashenko gave them the blossoms for their linden blossom tea. The woman prepared a snack of sausage and speck for my friend and me, laid the heaping wooden dish on the table, and set the bread basket beside it. Furthermore, how could I have guessed that I would reach into this bread basket a hundred times, take out a roll, and break it open, laying the one half on the left of my plate and the other on the right. Near the speck and the sausage lay a few slices of Emmentaler cheese from the Drava 106

ADRIAN WEST Valley Cheeseworks in Spittal. A pickle lay bent before my eyes. I had, however, already eaten a half hour before in the vacation house, I had no more appetite and I considered whether I should decline the woman’s snack or whether I should eat it nevertheless. I didn’t want to offend her. It may be I, who am interested in a room in her farmhouse, will hurt her feelings if I turn down the snack. My friend, the son of the parish priest, helped himself, at least one of us was eating, and I begged the farmwife to believe me, that I had eaten just a half-hour before. Moreover, these first impressions in her farmhouse in which I was to pass many months had so arrested me that I could not devote myself to any thing else, that I could not sit and eat calmly in the knowledge that in doing so, I would be staring down into the valley where I grew up and down onto my hometown, as if the years I had passed at my writing table had never happened. The farmer, her husband, came through the door, sa down and ate the snack that had been prepared for me. He is a small, gangly man with still-full black hair combed back from his forehead and a black moustache. He didn’t speak a word. I sensed immediately that he was taciturn, like myself. When I was spending my first days on his farm, I saw—he was lying on the sofa—how his fifteen-year-old son threw a pillow at his head from the bench. Stop it, the father said. Imagine, I thought, sitting in front of a plate of speck, what would have happened if I had thrown a pillow at my father’s head! Maybe when I was still a small child, something be tween a living toy and a nascent man, maybe my father had caressed me, I’m not sure. Only for decades I 107

A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N sensed that something was lacking in me. Before I came to live with the farmer’s family, I was apparently walking down the road at the edge of the forest, and he ran into me with his sow on his way back from the neighborhood’s stud pig; I was appalled at myself when he said to me I had not greeted him on this occasion, that I walked by him wordlessly. It was com ing on midnight when he told me this story, a few months later. The television was still on. Njetotschka Wassiljewna had already gone to bed. In the kitchen only the stove light was still on, shining down on the elements, the rest of the room was dark, lit up only in snatches by the blue light from the television. The black and white images flitted by and tumbled on the screen. The farmer said, most likely you thought to yourself, you didn’t need to greet this old man, but that doesn’t matter, I don’t hold it against you, hear you me, I just wanted to say it to you once. Hear you me, he used often to say to me. A bit distraught and abashed, I went to bed. As Nje totschka Wassiljewna’s door was open, I walked to my bed room on my tiptoes, entering the room where, 38 years before, the young Njetotschka Wassiljewna Iljashenko had stepped, laying her Russian garments aside forever. Njetotsch ka Wassiljewna never set foot back in Russia and never saw her mother again. Her father, Wassilij Girgorowitsch Il jaschenko, who had lost a leg in the First World War, had fled the leaders of the Kolkhoz, at first holing up somewhere around Moscow. Wassilij Grigorowitsch belonged neither to the kolkhoz nor to the communist party, but he was, as Njetotschka Wassiljewna told me, repeatedly threated by the kolkhoz leaders in Dobenka, by the death’s heads, as Njetotschka termed them, and finally had to flee, or else they would have hanged him on the spot, or shot him, or shipped him off to Siberia. Hapka Dawidowna heard nothing more from her husband, and Njetotschka Wassiljewna never saw her father Wassilij Grigoriwitsch again. Hapka 108

ADRIAN WEST Dawidowna suspected that he had either died of heartache or else been tracked down and murdered. There were however rumors to the effect that he had been seen somewhere deep in Russia living with a widow and had two children. Hapka Dawidowna found this version implausible; she assumed that he had either been killed or had died from heartbreak and that the lice had eaten him to nothing. He had, Njetotschka Was siljewna said, a dreadful number of lice. But if it should be true that he was living with a widow and had two children, Hapka Dawidowna said to her daughter, I’m not bitter with him on that account, but I truly don’t believe it. I cannot imagine, said Hapka Dawidowna, that he wouldn’t contact me once, had he still been alive. Hapka Dawidowna never again married after her husband’s departure in 1931, though she received offers from numerous men. She always turned them down on the grounds that her husband Wassilij Grigor owitsch might still be alive, that he might come back to her again, and that she didn’t want to be married to someone else. She never gave up the hope that Wassilij Grigorowitsch Iljaschenko could still come back to Dobenka.


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N Extract of Bouvard et Pécuchet By Gustave Flaubert Translated by Marion Tricoire

from French

Bouvard et Pécuchet, Flaubert (Gustave). Edition Gallimard / Folio Classique. 2011. The text was first published in 1881, after the 1880 death of Flaubert.

Bouvard, plein d’expérience lui conseilla, pour l’assouplir, de la déployer depuis le ton le plus bas jusqu’au plus haut, et de la replier,—émettant deux gammes, l’une montante, l’autre descendante;—et lui-même se livrait à cet exercice, le matin dans son lit, couché sur le dos, selon le précepte des Grecs. Pécuchet, pendant ce temps-là, travaillait de la même façon; leur porte était close—et ils braillaient séparément. Ce qui leur plaisait de la Tragédie, c’était l’emphase, les discours sur la Politique, les maximes de perversité. Ils apprirent par coeur les dialogues les plus fameux de Racine et de Voltaire et ils les déclamaient dans le corridor. Bouvard, comme au Théâtre-Français, marchait la main sur l’épaule de Pécuchet en s’arrêtant par intervalles, et roulait ses yeux, ouvrait les bras, accusait les destins. Il avait de beaux cris de douleur dans le Philoctète de La Harpe, un joli hoquet dans Gabrielle de Vergy—et quand il faisait Denys tyran de Syracuse une manière de considérer son fils en l’appelant Monstre, digne de moi! qui était vraiment terrible. Pécuchet en oubliait son rôle. Les moyens lui manquaient, non la bonne volonté. Une fois dans la Cléopâtre de Marmontel, il imagina de reproduire le sifflement de l’aspic, tel qu’avait dû le faire l’automate inventé exprès par Vaucanson. Cet effet manqué



The now greatly experienced Bouvard advised him to deploy his voice from the lowest tone to the highest, and to fold it back again, in order to make it more flexible - thus displaying two scales, one ascending and one descending; he practiced this exercise himself in bed in the morning, lying on his back, according to the Greek precept. Meanwhile, Pécuchet practiced in the same way; their door was closed, and they brayed on either side. What they liked in Tragedy was the emphasis, the discoursing on Politics, the maxims of perversity. They learned by heart the most famous dialogues in Racine and Voltaire, and would belt them out in the corridor. Mimicking French theater, Bouvard walked with his hand on Pécuchet’s shoulder, stopping from time to time to roll his eyes, raise his arms, and accuse fate. He cried in pain beautifully for La Harpe’s Philoctète, gave a pretty hiccup in Gabrielle de Vergy – and when he played the tyrant Denys of Syracuse, he had a way of staring while exclaiming “Monster, worthy of me!” that was terrible indeed. Pécuchet even forgot his lines. What he lacked in competence he made up for in good will. Once deep in Marmontel’s Cléopatra, he thought of hissing like the asp, reproducing what the automaton purposefully invented by Vaucanson had probably done. This ruined the


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N les fit rire jusqu’au soir. La Tragédie tomba dans leur estime. Bouvard en fut las le premier, et y mettant de la franchise démontra combien elle est artificielle et podagre: la niaiserie de ses moyens, l’absurdité des confidents. Ils abordèrent la Comédie—qui est l’école des nuances. Il faut disloquer la phrase, souligner les mots, peser les syllabes. Pécuchet n’en put venir à bout—et échoua complètement dans Célimène. Du reste, il trouvait les amoureux bien froids, les raisonneurs assommants, les valets intolérables, Clitandre et Sganarelle aussi faux qu’Égisthe et qu’Agamemnon. ---

Les choux le consolèrent. Un, surtout, lui donna des espérances. Il s’épanouissait, montait, finit par être prodigieux, et absolument incomestible. N’importe! Pécuchet fut content de posséder un monstre. Alors il tenta ce qui lui semblait être le summum de l’art : l’élève du melon. Il sema les graines de plusieurs variétés dans des assiettes remplies de terreau, qu’il enfouit dans sa couche. Puis, il dressa une autre couche; et quand elle eut jeté son feu repiqua les plants les plus beaux, avec des cloches par-dessus. Il fit toutes les tailles suivant les préceptes du bon jardinier, respecta les fleurs, laissa se nouer les fruits, en choisit un sur chaque bras, supprima les autres; et dès qu’ils eurent la grosseur d’une noix, il glissa sous leur écorce une planchette pour les empêcher de pourrir au contact du crottin. Il les bassinait, les aérait, enlevait avec son mouchoir la brume des 112

MARION TRICOIRE effect and kept them laughing through the evening. Tragedy fell down the ladder of their esteem. Bouvard grew bored with it first, and put all his sincerity in demonstrating how tired and artificial tragedy really was: the silliness of its means, the absurdity of confidants. They tackled comedy, which was a lesson in nuances. One had to dislocate the sentence, underline the words, and weigh the syllables. Pécuchet could not get to the end of it – and he completely failed in Célimène. Besides, he found the lovers to be quite cold, know-it-alls, insufferable, the valets intolerable, Clitander and Sganarel as fake as Aegisthus and Agamemnon. ---

The cabbages comforted him. One, especially, gave him hope. It was blossoming, growing and ended up being prodigious as well as absolutely inedible. Never mind! Pécuchet was pleased to possess such a monster. Then he tried what he considered the acme of art: melon breeding. He planted the seeds of several varieties into plates filled with loam that he buried in its bed. Then, he fixed another bed up, and when it had thrown its fire, he transplanted the most beautiful plants, and hung bells over them. He did all of the trimming according to the good gardener’s precepts, respected the flowers, let the fruits be pollinated, chose one among all on each branch, terminated the others; and as soon as they reached the size of a walnut, he slipped beneath their skin a small plank of wood to prevent them from rotting in contact with the dung. He would wet them, air them, wipe the mist 113

A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N cloches – et si des nuages paraissaient, il apportait vivement des paillassons. La nuit, il n’en dormait pas. Plusieurs fois même, il se releva; et pieds nus dans ses bottes, en chemise, grelottant, il traversait tout le jardin pour aller mettre sur les bâches la couverture de son lit. Les cantaloups murirent. Au premier, Bouvard fit la grimace. Le second ne fut pas meilleur, le troisième non plus; Pécuchet trouvait pour chacun une excuse nouvelle, jusqu’au dernier qu’il jeta par la fenêtre, déclarant n’y rien comprendre.


MARION TRICOIRE on the bells away – and if clouds were to appear, he quickly brought straw mats over. He couldn’t sleep at night. He even got up several times, and barefoot in his boots, wearing only an undershirt, he crossed the whole garden, shivering, in order to cover the tarps with his own bed quilt. The cantaloupes ripened. Bouvard tasted the first one and winced. The second one did not turn out better, and neither did the third one; Pécuchet found a new excuse for each of them, up to the last - which he threw out of the window, declaring he could make neither head nor tail of it.


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N



A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N

The Sinking Hearts Society By Agustín Cadena Translated by Pat Dubrava

from Spanish


Happy people have no idea how comforting the bathhouse can be for an emotionally wounded person. You feel protected in that cave of heat, humidity and dimness: it’s a bit like returning to the womb, to those perfect days when you didn’t know—didn’t have a clue— that in a few months you’d be thrown out into the world, a drastically hostile place where you’d always be alone. That’s why the sauna is like a drug for us. Only there do we feel safe from the misery outside with its dry air, intolerably harsh sunlight and the aggressive rush of people who have someplace to go. We don’t rush. We arrive in the morning, at various times. I arrive around ten, and from the moment I enter the glass lobby door, begin to carry out the rituals of the initiated. I mention initiates because it’s generally the case that there are visitors among us, those who come a time or two and then disappear. Their newcomer status is noticeable precisely by their lack of ritual. They undress, take their towels and sheets and enter the sauna laughing and chattering among themselves. In my case, I was saying, I arrive around ten in the morning, after a light breakfast of coffee and cereal with milk. As is common knowledge, emotional

P A T D U B R AVA cripples can’t eat much nor do they feel like cooking anything. Besides, we often don’t even have clean dishes. Well, I arrive—as I was saying—around ten, show my card to the desk clerk, who checks my membership in the computer and gives me a towel, a sheet and the key to a locker. With these three things—the exit pass to escape the sordid world—I walk to the end of the hall, where the dressing rooms are. Once inside, the ritual begins with the awakening of my senses. I savor the smell of the cleaning fluids the employees use to mop the floor several times a day and the aromas of deodorants, soaps, bath gels, colognes and so on of the other habitués. I greet those who are there and chat a bit with them while they dress to leave or undress like me to enter the sauna. I search among the lockers for the number that corresponds to my key, open my bag and with the same solemn parsimony with which a priest prepares the vestments, chalice and monstrance for mass, I arrange the ceremonial objects on the bench: towel, sheet, bathing suit, flip flops and aroma therapy case. Then I undress, put on my bathing suit and with my spirits already less deflated, head with my things to the “beach,” as we regulars call it. It is a shadowy room, full of lawn chairs, where one goes to rest after leaving the sauna: the “funeral chapel,” we like to say. In the middle of the beach, there’s a small pool with water at 58 degrees and at the back a carafe of mineral water, plastic cups and a bowl of apples. And there I find them, my siblings in sadness. Despite the gloom, we all recognize each other, including those whose faces aren’t visible because they’re curled up in a chair or cover their faces with the damp sheet while they doze or weep. Within a certain amount of variety, their bodies are quite similar, just so many manifestations of a single body: that of solitude. They move ponderously, overwhelmed by the weight of countless disillusionments or perhaps by a single immense, rotund, irreversible calamity. 119

A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N Among the women, some arrive with two-piece bikinis, but most take the bra off, too depressed to be modest. “My life’s in ruins,” I heard one say, “and they still want it to matter to me if they see my breasts.” The women are of various ages between twenty-five and sixty, the perfect range for emotional invalids. Before twenty-five, no one takes you seriously—they think you simply haven’t gotten over adolescence. And after sixty, it’s just too macabre. Well, fine, once I locate my companions in the perpetual dusk of the beach and greet those it is possible to greet, I go directly into the sauna. Inside, bodies move even more slowly, groping, clumsy, as if they were scuba diving. Although in reality they are nearly motionless. The saddest seek a corner and assume fetal positions, their faces turned to the wall. I check the position of the hour glass in order not to stay in the sauna longer than is healthy—it’s common knowledge that the emotionally impaired tend toward hypochondria—and if no one has used any essential oils, I open my aroma therapy case, choose something appropriate for my state of mind—menthol and eucalyptus almost always—and ask those present if they agree with the selection. Invariably they say yes. I respond the same way when someone else chooses the fragrance. This is the climactic moment: the first round of sweating, when the body has just come from the street—tense, parched, aching from the shocks of life, the setbacks of fortune—and submerges in the heat and humidity. You close your eyes, although the golden dusk often makes it unnecessary, recline in a corner and inhale deeply this mix of sweat, wood, the chosen extract, water, hot stones, blood, fabric and organic life…and set to nursing your miseries until the hour glass signals that the time of the first session is up. Then you leave the room, go to the showers or throw yourself into the pool, where you fear you’ll be paralyzed by the 120

P A T D U B R AVA freezing water. Finally, refreshed, reborn, you take your place on the beach with your companions. There you stay half an hour, dozing or talking in low voices (one must respect the suffering of others) or sobbing discreetly while drinking mineral water and eating an apple. Then you return to the sauna, then again to the pool, and again to the beach, and so on, until sadness finishes dissolving under the skin and escapes in the form of warm, subtle sweat that leaves a fragrant nostalgia of tears in the towels. That is our life, the only conceivable way of enduring the burden of daily existence with all its horrors: the disillusionment of the married, the desertion of the divorced, the despair of the unmarried…and thus we met Fernanda. Fernanda was twenty-eight and her body didn’t reflect her emotional lacks, except for the fact that she was a bit stooped. She was one of the initiated. We used to say that if we were a religion, she would be its high priestess: she would have earned that position by her devotion to the unwritten principals of the fellowship. She was truly a virtuoso of the renunciation of anything that could cause happiness. Her talent for self-sabotage was marvelous. She was capable of getting sick or even of provoking an accident if by doing so she would miss the chance for a romance or a promotion at work. She had a clinical eye for falling in love with the worst jerks and the nose of a dog for detecting the most unreliable people and confiding in them. Above all, she was a great preacher of our doctrine. Her pessimism—the darkest I’ve ever known—was revealed in forceful statements: “I am not happy, I have never been happy and I will never be happy.” That was Fernanda. One day she began to change. First for one excuse, then another, she stopped coming to the bathhouse regularly. And on one occasion we caught her smiling to herself, her eyes brilliant with a horrendous joy. “I’m in love,” she confessed. “And I’m happy.” 121

A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N Whoa. That was a bomb. Of course, we weren’t going to let her abandon her principles so easily. Please. We were her friends. “Suffering,” I pronounced, quoting Andrzejewski, “is love’s constant shadow. One may love, but loving love itself increases both love and suffering.” The others made comments in the same vein. We tried, but we couldn’t keep Fernanda with us. She left. And I would like to say that she left us even sadder than before, but that wasn’t possible. I can only say she left us resentful. No one in the club wanted to remember her. And if anyone did, he was careful not to mention it. The name “Fernanda” became a taboo word. We referred to her once only, in an indirect manner. And it was to make an example of her. “You don’t want to end up like that one,” someone advised, trying to counsel a brother who was building up false hopes about a woman. In reality no one envied her. If she really was happy, well, fine, we thought. But that wasn’t for us. Happiness is something too vast, too dizzying. It’s like finding yourself in the center of an immense plaza with no shelter from the midday sun. And it’s so lonely: no one helps the happy person, no one understands him, no one advises him. Not even God. Isn’t that what the Gospel says? “Blessed are those who weep…” We had each other and we had that warm, humid, twilight cave like a mother in whose bosom we took refuge to nourish our souls. After some months, as we had secretly hoped, Fernanda returned. Defeated, broken, sad. The affair had ended. Love once more had shown itself to be a too fragile, too ephemeral flower. And as in the parable of the prodigal son, in the fellowship there was more joy for the bad sheep returned than for all the good ones. The sessions of crying and sorrow regained their old splendor. Time passed. Someone else left and then returned, just like Fernanda. We lost our fear of the temptations of happiness. We 122

P A T D U B R AVA understood that the Sinking Hearts Society would survive every love, all the winds of fortune. The other day, someone brought a mixture of floral essences called “Melancholy Gypsy” to the sauna. It was a memorable session: we cried until we fell asleep, like babies. Translator’s Note “La hermandad de los tristes” provides an example of the recurrent gender issues in translating from Spanish to English. We have no choice, in English, but to translate this literally as “the brotherhood of the sad ones” or “the sisterhood.” But in this story, “la hermandad” includes both genders, and either of our English exclusionary options simply won’t do. It was a delightful occupation for a few days, to play with the various substitutions that might work: fellowship, club, group, congregation, union, association, etc. I am an aficionada—though not a regularly sad one—of what we call the steam baths here in dry Colorado, and was gratified to find that the rituals are the same, wherever in the world they may be found. This one might be in Hungary, the place Cadena has been living and teaching for the last eight years, but it could as easily be in México or in Denver. Here, as there, you enter the glass door of the lobby to receive a key, a sheet and a towel. The more pervasive and amorphous challenge was to reproduce the satiric tone of this story while maintaining the light-heartedness at its core. Cadena mocks humankind, but with affection. Las tentaciones de la dicha, the title of the 2010 collection that includes this story, is a phrase taken from it. And a final note: Jerzy Andrzejewski, 1909 – 1983, the award-winning Polish novelist quoted in this story, was often short-listed for the Nobel, but never won it. 123

A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N

A Mysterious Crime By Jean Lorrain Translated by Timothy Nassau

from French

Histoires de masques (1900) for Antonio de La Gandara “Preserve us, Lord, from the terrible thing that walks the night.” -King David “What I saw, that night, in my hotel room, on Mardi Gras: damn if it doesn’t beat the most horrendous heights of man’s imagination!” And, having poured himself a large soda glass full of chartreuse, de Romer drained his cup and began: “It was two years ago, when my nerves were at their worst. I was done with ether, but not its mordant side-effects: ear problems, eye problems, pains in the evening, nightmares; sulfonates and bromide had wiped away the worst of my afflictions, but the pain was still there, worst of all in the apartment that I’d shared with her, across the river, on rue Saint-Guillaume, where the wallpaper and the curtains, as if under some deleterious spell, exuded her memory: anywhere else I could sleep, I could spend a peaceful evening, but just opening the


T I MO T H Y NAS SAU apartment door I’d feel the formless anxiety of the past corrupting the very air around me; irrational fears made me heave and shiver, one right after the other. Strange shadows shrinking into the corners, mysterious folds in the curtains, doors and windows brought to life by what nameless fearsome spirit I do not know. At night, it was unbearable; something unknown and horrifying lived in that apartment with me, something I couldn’t see, but that I felt crouching in the shadows, watching me, hostile, its breath on my face at times, an unspeakable movement against my side. Gentlemen, it was a terrible feeling; if I had to live through that nightmare again, I’d rather... I’d… but I was saying... “I couldn’t sleep in my apartment, I could hardly even live there anymore so, with a little over a year left to my lease, I went to stay in a lodging-house. But I couldn’t stay still; I left the Continental for the Hôtel du Louvre, I moved from there to another, further off the map, driven on by a manic propulsion towards change and restlessness. “Why, after eight days in the Terminus, with all the comforts a man desires, did I decide to move to that shabby hotel on the Rue d’Amsterdam: Hôtel de Normandie, was it? Or Hôtel de Brest? Hôtel de Rouen? All the hotel names are the same by the Gare Saint-Lazare! “Was it the endless stream of guests checking in and out that drew me in, brought me to there rather than any other place?... I couldn’t say… My room, a large room on the third floor, with two big windows, opened out right on the square of the Place du Havre. I’d arrived there three days earlier, on Shrove Saturday, and was settling in nicely. 125

A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N “As I said, it was a third-rate hotel, but one of proudly respectable appearance, a hotel for travelers and provincials, less anxious lodging near the train station than in the heart of the city; a bourgeois hotel, emptied out from night to night and always full. “Besides, the faces I saw in the halls, on the staircase, they were not important to me, they were the least of my worries; and yet, that night, when I’d stopped in around six o’clock at the front desk to get my key (I was dining out and had returned for my clothes), I couldn’t keep from eyeing two strangers there with an unusually intense curiosity. “They had just arrived, a black dressing case was poised against their feet; leaning against the desk of the managing clerk, they were discussing the price of a room. “‘It’s for a night,’ said the larger of the two, the older as well, it seemed; ‘we’re leaving tomorrow, whatever room you have will do.’ ‘One or two beds?’ the clerk asked. ‘Well! For all we’ll be sleeping… We’ve come for the costume ball.’ ‘Give us two beds,’ cut in the younger one. ‘So then! One room with two beds; have we got any, Eugène?’ The clerk called over one of the boys who had just walked in and, after a brief exchange: ‘Put them in 13, on the third floor; you’ll like the room, it’s very big; would messieurs like to go up now?’ And to a signed no from the two strangers: ‘Would messieurs like dinner? The guests will be eating soon.’ ‘No, we’re eating out,’ said the larger one. ‘We’ll be back around eleven to change into our costumes. Have our bag taken up.’ ‘And should I put on a fire in the room?’ the boy asked. ‘Yes, a fire for eleven,’ they were already out the door. 126

T I MO T H Y NAS SAU “I realized I’d been standing there staring, my burning candlestick in hand; I blushed like a guilty child and quickly went up to my room; the boy was turning over the sheets in the room next to mine; the new arrivals had 13 and I was in Room 12; our rooms were therefore connected, so I kept telling myself. “Passing back down by the front desk, I couldn’t keep from asking the clerk who my neighbors were. ‘The two men with the leather case?’ he replied. ‘They signed the book, see for yourself!’ And with a quick glance I read: Henri Desnoyels, thirtytwo years old, and Edmond Chalegrin, twenty-six years old, both from Versailles, and the both of them butchers. “Despite their bowler hats and travelling cloaks, for two butchers their clothing and manners were quite refined; the larger one had been carefully gloved and carried, about him, a certain air of haughtiness and nobility. There was also a resemblance between the two: the same eyes, deep blue, almost black, and big, with long lashes, and the same long reddish hairs on their faces, drawing out the uneven silhouette; but the larger, much more pale than the other, seemed weary and irritable. “An hour later I had forgotten all about them; it was the night of Mardi Gras and the streets were loud and full of masks. I came home around midnight and walked up to my room; already half naked, I was going to climb into bed when the sound of voices came from the room next door; it was my butchers returning. “Why did my irrational and imperious curiosity, first piqued in the front office of the hotel, take hold of me once more? Despite myself I listened. ‘If you don’t want to put on your costume, we won’t go to the ball,’ snapped the voice of the larger man; ‘So this was all for nothing then; what’s wrong with you? 127

A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N Are you sick?’ The other remained silent: ‘Are you drunk? Have you been drinking again?’ hissed the older man. Now came the voice of the other, flaccid and lifeless: ‘It’s your fault, for letting me drink. I always get sick when I drink like that.’ ‘Leave it, it’s fine, go to bed,’ the older man’s voice was brusque and piercing, ‘take your shirt.’ I heard the clasp of their dressing case being opened. ‘So, you’re not going to the ball?’ trailed the voice of the drunk. ‘It’s no fun running through the streets alone, is it, all dressed up; I’m going to bed.’ I heard him angrily punching his mattress and pillow, followed by the sound of clothes falling from across the room; the two men were undressing; I breathed heavily as I listened, crouched barefoot by the door between our rooms; the voice of the larger one picked up again in the silence: ‘And such a nice costume, such a shame!’ And the rustling of crumpled satin and cloth. “I’d brought my eye to the keyhole; the light from my candle kept my room from being black and me from seeing anything in the room next door; I blew it out: the bed of the younger man was immediately in front of my door. He lay without moving, collapsed in a chair against the bed, extremely pale and with eyes glazed over, his head fallen off from the back of his chair and slumped onto a pillow; his hat was on the ground, his vest unbuttoned, the collar of his shirt wide open, with no tie; he looked as if he’d been choked to death. The other man, who I saw only after a while, was standing near a table covered in light fabrics and jeweled satin. ‘Damn! I have to put it on!’ he burst out without regard for his companion; and, after centering himself in front of the mirrored wardrobe, muscular bulging and with graceful elegance, he slipped over his head a long green domino with an aventail covered in black velvet, producing instantly in me a feeling both so horrible and so uncanny that I had to contain a shriek, so strongly was I affected. 128

T I MO T H Y NAS SAU “I no longer knew the man, somehow taller now, as if grown larger beneath his cover of pale green silk, his face hidden behind a metal mask, below his hood of dark velvet. He was no longer a human being, standing there poised, but the horrible nameless thing, the terrifying thing that poisoned the nights in my apartment with its invisible presence, it had taken form and become reality. “The drunk, from his corner of the room, had followed this metamorphosis with a wild look; he had been seized by trembling fits and knees locked in terror, teeth clenched, he had pressed his hands together in prayer and shook from head to foot. The green form, spectral and slow, turned, in silence, in the middle of the room, in the clear light of the two lit candles and, behind the mask, I felt its two eyes terrifyingly sharp; it stopped, finally, right in front of the other man and, arms crossed across its chest, it shared with him a silent, knowing look; and then the other, as if taken by madness, collapsed off his chair, fell on his stomach on the floor and, trying to take up the robe in his arms, he rolled his head in its folds, stammering unintelligible words, foaming through his teeth, his eyes turned in opposite directions. “What history was there between these two men, what irredeemable past had this spectral robe and icy mask conjured up in the eyes of the madman? Woe! His pallor, his hands outstretched like the damned, moving in ecstasy through the piled folds of a robe made from worms! Woe! A ritual Sabbat in the dull furnishings of a hotel room! And while he wailed, with the black hole of a great scream caught in his open mouth, the form, it, slunk away, fell back on its steps, drawing along with every motion the gaze of the hypnotized, unhappy soul sprawled at its feet. 129

A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N “How many hours or minutes did this last? The Ghoul had stopped moving, it rested a hand on the forehead and heart of the man unconscious at its feet, then, taking him into its arms, it set him down in the chair near the bed. The man lay there, not moving, mouth hung open, eyes closed, head toppled back: the green form was crouched over the dressing case. What could it be searching for so intently, in the light of the chimney embers? It’s found it, because I can’t see it anymore, but I hear it rummaging through bottles above the washing basin, and an odor I know well, an odor that grips my brain and excites me and disturbs me, spreads through the room: the odor of ether. What is it carrying so carefully in its hands? Woe! The horror! A mask of glass, an airtight mask with no eyes and no mouth, full to the brim with liquid poison, with ether: and now, it leans over the man, lying there defenseless, vulnerable, unconscious, it puts the mask on his face, secures it with a red scarf and, its shoulders racked by laughter under the dark velvet hood: ‘We won’t hear any more from you,’ I thought I heard it murmur. “The butcher takes off his clothes, wanders around the room in his underwear, his terrible robe discarded on the ground; he retrieves his clothes from that day, puts on his coat, his clubman’s dog skin gloves and, hat on head, silently, in a bit of a rush perhaps, he puts the two carnival costumes and his flasks in the case with nickel-plated clasps; he lights a Londres, takes his suitcase, his umbrella, opens the door and leaves… And not once did I make a noise, did I ring the bell, or did I call out for help.” “But you were dreaming, as you always are,” de Jacquels said to de Romer. 130

T I MO T H Y NAS SAU “Yes! And it was such a vivid dream that today in Villejuif, in the insane asylum, there is an incurable etheromanic that no one has ever been able to identify. But look in the book at when he was brought in: found Wednesday, March 10, at the Hotel de… on the rue d’Amsterdam, a French national, age presumed twenty-six years, name presumed Edmond Chalegrin.”


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N



A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N Tariq Adely is a student of translation at Brown University. His main interests are contemporary Latin American poetry and the phonetic considerations within translation. He hopes to soon explore the field of 20th century Arabic poetry. Chris Anderson is a junior at Brown University, where he is studying Literary Arts and the French language. Andrew Barrett is a translator and musician who splits his time between Ithaca, NY and Detroit, MI. In 2012 he received a Master of Arts in Literary Translation degree from the University of Rochester. He is currently translating a portion of the Dionysiaca, a lush and expansive Ancient Greek epic poem composed by Nonnus of Panopolis. Andrew has also translated poems by the Modern Greek poets Christopher Kontonikolis and Harris Psarras. Patricia Dubrava has published two books of poems and one of stories translated from the Spanish. An essayist, poet and translator, her recent publications include her translation of a story by Rafael Courtoisie, in Norton’s anthology Sudden Fiction Latino, 2010. A Cadena story she translated will be included in Texas Tech’s NewBorder anthology, 2013 and Mónica Lavín stories appeared in the Fall, 2012 Metamorphoses and The Dallas Review. Dubrava’s blog and books are available at Forrest Gander’s Core Samples from the World was a finalist for both the Pulitzer and National Book Critics Circle Prize. His most recent project is Panic Cure: Poems from Spain for the 21st Century where the translations of poems by Esther Ramón published in this journal will appear. 134

T H E T R A N S L AT O R S Mariela Griffor was born in the city of Concepción in southern Chile. She is the author of Exiliana (2007) and House (2007) and founder of Marick Press. Her work has appeared in Passages North, Cerise Press, Washington Square Review and others. Mariela holds a B.A in Journalism from Wayne State University and M.F.A. in Creative Writing from New England College. Her forthcoming publications include the translations: Canto General by Pablo Neruda (Tupelo Press, 2013), At Half Mast by Carmen Berenguer, Militants Poems by Raul Zurita, and, Bye, have a good time! by Kristina Lugn. She is Honorary Consul of Chile in Michigan. Eunice Kim (Korean name, Pulum Kim) studies Comparative Literature at Brown University through the translation track, and is a member of the class of 2013.5. Lucy Lee ‘14 is a Comparative Literature major at Princeton University, obtaining a certificate of finance. An Aussie, she translates American everyday. Juan-Diego Mariategui was born in Lima, Peru in 1992. He immigrated to the United States when he was 7 years old and has lived in Miami, Florida ever since. He is currently studying Comparative Literature and English at Brown University, with a focus on Spanish and Brazilian literature. Vanessa Martinez, originally from Lincoln, Nebraska, holds Bachelor’s degrees in English and Music from Nebraska Wesleyan University. Her senior thesis was focused on literary translation, specifically from Spanish to English. She also traveled to Costa Rica with co-author Catherine Nelson to undertake a project translating the work of young writers, during 135

A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N which time the short story “Morphine� was produced. Vanessa recently graduated with Master’s degrees in Latin American Studies and Community and Regional Planning from The University of Texas at Austin. She currently lives in Mexico City, where she teaches English to local business professionals. Timothy Nassau, born in 1990, graduated last Spring from Brown University, where he studied Comparative Literature and translation. He now works as a paralegal at a prestigious international law firm. Catherine Nelson is an Associate Professor of Spanish at Nebraska Wesleyan University and a literary translator. Emma Ramadan is studying literary translation at Brown University. Her writing has appeared or is forthcoming in Extract(s), Bluestem, and Gigantic Sequins. Bradley Schmidt grew up in rural Kansas, completed a B.A. in German Studies at a small liberal arts college there, studied German Literature and Theology in Marburg, and started a doctoral project on Schleiermacher in Halle before completing a masters in translation studies in Leipzig. He lives and works in Leipzig as a translator and lecturer. His translations of contemporary German prose and poetry have appeared widely online and in print. Alison Silver is a sophomore, studying literature and languages at Brown University. A passionate student of French and Italian, she plans to major in Comparative Literature. She is also a senior staff writer for The Brown Daily Herald. 136

T H E T R A N S L AT O R S Evan Thomas is a Classics major at Brown University studying Ancient Greek and Latin with a special interest in poetry and particularly the reception of Classical poetry into modern culture. He is originally from Massachusetts and had a classically based education in high school. Marion Tricoire lives in Paris and is a student in the Master of Arts in Cultural Translation at the American University of Paris. Her translation was part of a senior honor thesis entitled “Copying and translating (in) Flaubert’s Bouvard and Pécuchet” back when she was majoring in Comparative Literature. Marion would sometimes like to be literally literary, mostly because this assonances-alliterations thing sounds quite incredible. When she was younger, she wanted to become a metaphor, but someone asked her to build a sandcastle and she forgot about her plan. Now she would like to be a translatorprofessor-publisher with interests in fiction, in translation, in fiction in translation, in 19th century French literature, in 20th and 21st century world literature, and so much more. Adrian West’s previous translations of Josef Winkler have appeared in Asymptote, Intranslation, and Fwriction, and his translation of his novel Wenn es soweit ist will be serialized this winter in the Brooklyn Rail. Andrea Wister is currently a junior at Brown University studying Psychology and Ethnic Studies. She hails from Oslo, Norway.


A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N Romain Bussine (1830 – 1899) was a nineteenth century French poet. For many years, he taught voice at the Paris Conservatory and gave occasional concerts as a baritone singer in Paris. Along with Camille Saint-Saëns, Bussine helped found the Société Nationale de Musique in 1871 as a setting for young composers to exhibit contemporary French music in public. Following a dispute about the promotion of foreign musical performances, Bussine resigned from his position as co-president of the Société Nationale in 1886. He died in Paris in 1899. Bussine originally adapted “Après Un Rêve” into French from an anonymous Tuscan text. The poem was set to music in 1878 by Gabriel Fauré, a French composer and one of the first members of the Société Nationale. Agustín Cadena (1963 – ) was born in Ixmiquilpan, Hidalgo, México. He has taught at La Universidad Iberoamericana; at Austin College, Texas; and currently teaches at the University of Debrecen, Hungary. Essayist, fiction writer, poet and translator, Cadena has won numerous national prizes and published twenty-four books, including collections of short fiction, essays and poetry, three novels, and the first in a trilogy of young adult novels, Alas de Gigante, 2011. Cadena blogs at Tristan Corbière (1845 – 1875), born Édouard-Joachim Corbière, was a French poet who studied at the Imperial Lycée of Saint-Brieuc from 1858 until 1860. Far from the affections of his family, he suffered from depression, and eventually contracted a severe rheumatism that would disfigure him for life. A combination of bitterness at having been sent to the school and difficulties adapting to its harsh demeanor would result in the sarcastic and almost anarchic character of most of his po138

T H E AU T H O RS etry. He died of tuberculosis at the age of 29. His work would not be widely read until he was included by Paul Verlaine in a gallery of poètes maudits (accursed poets); he is currently considered one of the master Symbolists. Catullus (ca. 84 BC – ca. 54 BC) was a Roman poet of the 1st century BC from Verona. His corpus consists heavily of lyric and love poetry; little else is known about his poetry due to his scarce manuscript tradition. Robert Desnos (1900 – 1945) was born the son of a café owner, and attended commercial college, afterward working as a clerk. He would, however, change careers soon after, and became a literary columnist for the newspaper Paris-Soir. He is known as one of the major figures of surrealism, although later in life he would stray from his surrealist origins. During World War II, association with the French Resistance and various anti-Nazi works of his resulted in his deportation. He was sent to Auschwitz, and then transferred to a concentration camp in Czechoslovakia. This camp was liberated in 1945, but while in the camp Desnos had contracted typhoid. The disease would result in his death on June 8, 1945. Marguerite Duras (1914 – 1996) is one of France’s most renowned female writers and film directors. Born in French Indochina, now Vietnam, she spent most of her young life in poverty there as part of a campaign by the French government to colonize the area. This is also the site of her most famous book, L’Amant, which tells the story of a taboo affair between a young girl and her much older Chinese lover, which won the French Prix Goncourt, France’s highest literary honor. Duras published many novels, plays, and essay, her style becom139

A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N ing more unique and similar to the Nouveau roman literary movement with the book Moderato Cantabile, a tale of lust and obsession. Most of Duras’s books are sexual, psychological, and deeply personal, and her films, most famously India Song, are vigorously experimental. Gustave Flaubert (1821 – 1880) was a 19th century French writer that wrote about boredom, stupidity, and absence with the skills of his obsession with preciseness and detail. He spent an average of five years on each novel, famously shouting out each sentence to find the perfect word, the perfect sound. His most famous work is Madame Bovary, but his masterpieces also include The Sentimental Education, a novel about a man who entirely misses the 1848 revolution and his love story which remains at the level of fantasy; and Bouvard and Pécuchet, an unfinished novel about two copyists who retire and decide to learn all the knowledge of their time, systematically failing everything they attempt to achieve. K.D. Kim (1930 – ) who goes by his penname Wolsan, is a writer, poet, and a religious leader of South Korea. He was born in a small city of Southern Korea, Susan City of Southern Choongchung County, during the Japanese colonial period. With the eventful history of modern Korean from colonized times to the Korean War, economic development, the IMF crisis, and democratic revolution as a backdrop to his life, he has written over 15 volumes of essays and poetry collections that often reflect social issues in Korea. He currently resides in Seoul and is an active member of International P.E.N club, Korea.


T H E AU T H O RS Jean Lorrain (1855-1906) was a quintessential Belle Époque author: a Parnassian, Symbolist, Decadent, and homosexual, he lived from scandal to scandal, taking up with carnival wrestlers and dueling Marcel Proust, after savagely criticizing the latter’s first book of poetry. The story, “A Mysterious Crime,” is from the collection Histoires de masques, published in 1900. Lorrain died only a few years later, his health eroded by syphilis and the abuse of ether. Kristina Lugn (1948 – ) is a Swedish poet, dramatist, literary critic, and member of the Swedish Academy. She was born in Tierp, Uppland and was raised in Skövde, Västergötland. She has published seven books of poetry and her plays have been staged at various prestigious Swedish theatres. Her debut work was the poetry collection Om jag inte (1972) but she made her breakthrough in the media in 1983 with the play Bekantskap önskas med äldre bildad herre. Lugn has been awarded several awards. Since 1997, she has been running the small Stockholm independent Theater Brunnsgatan Fyra established by the popular Swedish actor Allan Edwall. Today, Kristina Lugn is as well known for her dramatic works as she is for her poetry. Her texts often deal with sorrow and loneliness and are frequently set in suburbia. Her new collection of poems Bye, have a good time! is concerned with the idea of death: the body and life are examined through the lens of the domestic space. Edvard Munch (1863-1944), a Norwegian painter and printmaker, is best known for his painting commonly referred to as “Skrik” (The Scream). This painting is one of the most recognizable images of all time, although his original title was “Der Schrei der Natur,” German for “The Scream of Nature.” His intensely evocative treatment of psychological themes built 141

A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N upon some of the main tenets of late 19th-century Symbolism, and his work would greatly influence German Expressionism in the early 20th century. He is known primarily for his visual work, but he also wrote, including a poem that was a reworking of a diary entry describing his inspiration for “The Scream.” His macabre outlook on life was partly a result of his father’s zealous pietism, his mother and sister’s deaths, and his family’s near constant poverty. In 1940, the Germans invaded Norway, and Nazis took control of the government; the Naziorchestrated funeral after his death in 1944 left the impression that he was a Nazi-sympathizer, but this was not the case. The Munch Museum, which opened in Tøyen in 1963, currently serves as his official estate. Nonnus of Panopolis was most likely born during the fifth century A.D. in the Upper Egyptian city of Panopolis. The Dionysiaca, a 48-book epic poem composed in Ancient Greek hexameters, which takes the mythological exploits and ancestry of the god Dionysus as its inspiration, is Nonnus’s magnum opus. The only other surviving work attributed to Nonnus is a hexameter paraphrase of the Gospel of John. Luis Chacón Ortiz (1986 – ) has published articles, short stories, and poems for various national and international journals. He published “El Sur” (Ediciones Fecit, Navarra, 2007), which won the national Ángel Martínez Baigorri Prize. Fernando Pessoa (1888 – 1935) was a Portuguese poet, philosopher, translator, and literary critic. He is considered one of the greatest poets in the Portuguese language and a significant literary figure in the twentieth century. Although he only published one work, Messages, in his lifetime, his posthumous publications confirmed his status and importance 142

T H E AU T H O RS to the Portuguese canon. He was born on June 13, 1888 in Lisbon and died on November 30, 1935 in Lisbon. Throughout his life, Pessoa utilized various heteronyms to express differing viewpoints and writing styles. René François Armand (Sully) Prudhomme (1839 – 1907) was a French poet and essayist, and in 1901 he became the winner of the first Nobel Prize in Literature. Born in Paris, he attended the Lycée Bonaparte, where he studied to become an engineer, yet eye trouble prevented him from exploring these studies further. He then studied law a notary’s office, until the favorable reception of his poems by the student society Conférence La Bruyère encouraged him towards a literary career. His first books were sentimental in nature, but throughout his career he shifted to a tone that combined the rigidity of form and emotional detachment of the Parnassian school with his own interest in philosophy and science. He was honored with induction into the Académie française and with the title Chevalier de la Légion d’honneur. After receiving the Nobel Prize, he donated most of the prize money to the creation of a poetry prize awarded by the Société des gens de lettres. He also founded the Société des poètes français with Jose-Maria de Heredia and Leon Dierx. He died suddenly on 6 September 1907 after a lifetime of ill health, and was buried at Père-Lachaise in Paris. Esther Ramón (1970 – ) is a poet and critic who earned her PhD in Comparative Literature at the Autonomous University of Madrid. Her work has been widely anthologized and also published in the discrete volumes: Tundra (Igitur, 2002), Reses (Trea, Critical Eye Award 2008), grisú (Trea, 2009) and Sales (Amargord, 2011). She is the coordinating editor of the magazine Minerva and she co-directs a Radio Circle poetry program 143

A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N called Definición de savia. Ulrike Almut Sandig (1979 – ) was born in Großenhain in the German Democratic Republic and now lives in Leipzig and Berlin. She started publishing her poetry by pasting poems onto construction fences and spreading them on flyers and free postcards. After completing her Magister in Religious Studies and Modern Indology, she subsequently graduated from the German Creative Writing Program Leipzig. Three volumes of her poetry have been published to date. Previous publications include radio plays and audiobooks of poetry and pop music. Roger Santiváñez (1956 – ) was born in the city of Piura on the northern coast of Peru. He attended the University of Piura and continued his studies at the National University of San Marcos. He obtained his doctorate at Temple University with a thesis on the poetry of Enrique Lihn. In the 1980s, Santiváñez was a founder and member of the Kloaka Movement, a revolutionary artist collective which emerged in Peru in response to political turmoil of the era. His collections of poetry include Amastris, Amaranth, Eucaristía, Labranda, and Dolores Morales de Santiváñez, Selección de Poesía (1975-2005). Lutz Seiler (1963 – ) is widely acknowledged as one of the major German poets of his generation. He was born in Gera, a town in the eastern part of the state of Thuringia in the former German Democratic Republic. He underwent training as a mason and a carpenter and completed mandatory military service. After studying in Halle and Berlin, in 1997 he became the literary director and occupant of the Peter Huchel Museum outside of Potsdam, the most recent caretaker in a line extending from the poet Huchel himself (who permanently left 144

T H E AU T H O RS the GDR in 1971) to the poet and translator Erich Arendt. Mr. Seiler has published over six volumes of poetry, short stories and essays. His many prizes include the Dresden Poetry Prize (2000), the Bremen Prize for Literature (2004), the Ingeborg Bachmann Prize (2007), and, most recently, the Fontane Prize (2010). He was writer-in-residence at the German Academy in Rome in 2010 and at the Villa Aurora in Los Angeles in 2003. In addition, he has been elected a member of the Saxon Academy of the Arts, Dresden, and the Academy of Arts, Berlin. in field latin is his most recent book of poetry. Jean Tardieu (1903 – 1995) was born in Saint-Germain-deJoux, Ain. He was a French poet, artist, musician, and dramatist. He started his career by publishing several collections of poetry in the 1930s, yet he would eventually turn to the stage. After World War II, he began work in radio. He would eventually work his way to head of dramatic programming and ultimately director of programs at France-Music. The quality and success of French National Public Radio after World War II has been attributed largely to this man. Tardieu’s works, combining the ideals of the French New Theatre and various forms of comedy to pick apart more traditional theatre, are often associated with the Theatre of the Absurd. Paul Verlaine (1844-1896) was a French leader of the Symbolist movement; born in Metz the son of an army officer, he attended the Lycée impérial Bonaparte in Paris and then took up a post in the civil service. In Paris, he befriended the Parnassians and together they frequented alehouses of the Rue Soufflot. In 1870, he married Mathilde Mauté de Fleurville, but soon abandoned his wife and son in order to pursue a relationship with the poet Arthur Rimbaud. In 1873, Verlaine would shoot and wound Rimbaud in a quarrel, and he would 145

A L D U S , A J O U R N A L O F T R A N S L AT I O N be imprisoned for the next two years. In prison, he converted to Catholicism and studied Shakespeare and Cervantes. After he was released from prison, he tried teaching for a while, and also farming. For the last decade of his life, Verlaine suffered from alcoholism and other physical illnesses. Fortunately for him, his early poetry was rediscovered around this time, and his lifestyle and strange behavior in front of crowds attracted crowds to him. In 1894 he was elected France’s “Prince of Poets” by his peers. Boris Vian (1920 – 1959) although best known for his novels, was a writer, poet, musician, singer, translator, critic, actor, inventor and engineer. His most controversial works were published under the pseudonym Vernon Sullivan; these works were strange parodies of criminal fiction. His other fiction, the most famous of which is L’Écume des jours (Froth on the Daydream), features made-up words, subtle wordplay, and surrealistic plots. In addition to his writings, Vian’s achievements include an important influence on the French jazz scene. He collapsed in a screening of the movie adaptation of his work I Spit on Your Graves, with which he was not at all pleased and from which he stated he wished his name would be removed. He died of sudden cardiac complications on the way to the hospital. Josef Winkler (1953 – ) is one of the most significant contemporary German-language writers; he has won numerous prizes, is current president of Austria’s Arts Senate, and writes regularly for the Austrian newspaper Die Presse.



Aldus Issue 3 - Web Version  

This is the third issue of Aldus, Brown University's journal of works in translation.